Vance on Key’s “crass opportunism”

Written By: - Date published: 4:01 pm, December 16th, 2014 - 74 comments
Categories: john key, journalism - Tags: , ,

74 comments on “Vance on Key’s “crass opportunism””

  1. mickysavage 1

    Very well put.

    Interesting that Stuff went the whole 9 yards and added a photo to the tweet.

    Payback time for dirty politics?

    • karol 1.1

      Yep. Saw that tweet and the article. Andrea Vance has become very good at looking critically at surveillance issues.

  2. Paul 2

    From the article
    “Other than furthering his own political ends, his (Key’s) comments were unhelpful and serve only to unnecessarily heighten anxiety in the community.”

    • tc 2.1

      “..heighten anxiety in the community ” is some of the nact’s finest work.

      • Paul 2.1.1

        Contrast our sleazy politicians response with the comments by both Europeans and Australians.

        ‘New Zealand politicians have no direct interests in the cafe tragedy, but it presented an ideal opportunity to champion anti-terror laws, rushed through Parliament last week. As the hostages cowered in the Sydney city-centre cafe yesterday, MP Mark Mitchell was declaring New Zealand’s law changes “100 per cent justified.”
        Just last week, Nils Muižnieks, The Council of Europe commissioner for human rights, offered a compelling counter-view.
        He condemned “secret, massive and indiscriminate” surveillance being undertaken by the Five Eyes intelligence network, of which New Zealand is a part,saying it “cannot be justified by the fight against terrorism or other important threats to national security”.’

        ‘Australia has not seen an immediate backlash in the wake of the siege. Rather, thousands of messages of support were posted online for Muslims.
        Key’s crass opportunism is a jarring contrast to the simple generosity of Australians who adopted #illridewithyou.’

  3. emergency mike 3

    Interesting looking at the comments. Very strongly split over this article. Sadly, the “I for one welcome our all-knowing spy-lords” comments appear to be winning. Along with the ridiculous “Would u rather Key said nothing about it?!?!” false alternative geniuses.

    • Paul 3.1

      Sadly Key’s scaremongering will appeal to an ill informed public fed on a diet of celebrity news, sport and reality T.V. Large swathes of the population have a very poor knowledge of world issues and be scared easily.
      They are easy to manipulate and Key knows this.

  4. Ad 4

    This guy can play the keys of anxious causality like a black grand piano.

  5. Liberal Realist 5

    Good to see NZ has at least one journalist that still retains some sense of critical analysis.

    As soon as I heard about the situation in Sydney I knew that Key and NAct would start beating the ‘anti-terror’ drum and that they did. Beginning with Mitchell feeling vindication for his party as they rammed through the most current round of ‘civil rights removal’. How utterly predictable! And of course the ignorant myopic fools who in turn beat the drum for NAct as coined above by emergency mike – “I for one welcome our all-knowing spy-lords”.

    • Paul 5.1

      Wasn’t Mitchell the Nat whom Lusk and Slater got placed in a safe seat, mentioned in Dirty Politics?

      • Liberal Realist 5.1.1

        Correct. Lusk & Slater were implicated in manipulating the Rodney candidate selection in Mitchell’s favour. Mitchell was also in the thick of DP and threatened defamation proceedings against Nicky Hager. His offices in Wellington were also broken into and a number of items taken. It is also alleged that this personal email was hacked.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1.1.1

          Who cares what Mitchell asserts happened? His threatened defamation proceedings amounted to precisely jack shit, eh. Not to mention his mercenary ethics.

      • saveNZ 5.1.2

        Mercenary Mitchell paid Slater to get his safe Nat seat in parliament. They manipulated the National selection process and MSM to get him in. Now Mad Mitchell is putting our terror laws through. I’m scared already. So good that we have politicians of such moral standards creating our laws. NOT.

        • Paul 5.1.2.1

          Mercenary.

          ‘Mitchell worked for eight years as a private security contractor and spent time in Iraq, including the siege of the Italian-run An Nasiriyah compound in Southern Iraq by the Mahdi militia in 2004.’

          Sounds ugly.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1.2.1.1

            “After leaving the police, Mitchell worked for eight years as a private security contractor and spent time in Iraq.”

            Wikipedia.

            As though monetising an illegal war wasn’t enough shame to bring upon his family, he now cites and derives further profit from his experiences in much the same way as Haron Monis quoted God.

            • Paul 5.1.2.1.1.1

              The more you read about him, the more you are appalled.
              Making money out of misery.
              As the heading of this thread says, crass opportunism….but much worse.
              And this is the guy who promoted our new spy laws.
              Horrible.

              Here’s Mitchell’s bio. Through the gloss of the SST article, given what happened in Iraq, this is not a nice read.

              ‘British kidnap and ransom risk-management firm Control Risks had been contracted by the British government to set up the security programme for the interim coalition government in Iraq. Someone he knew worked there and wanted Mitchell on board. His job would be to protect the diplomats and officials working for the interim government.
              “It seemed like an interesting opportunity, and there was this sense of history in the making. What was happening in the Middle East was having a pretty profound effect on the rest of the world.”
              Mitchell faced daily threats at the Coalition Provisional Authority Government base in An Nasiriyah, in southern Iraq.
              The work involved transporting government officials to meetings around the country and protecting the sites where they lived. He was shot at, and his vehicles were blown up in roadside bomb attacks, but he was proud that no-one was hurt or killed on his watch.
              In 2004 he did a stint training Iraqi security forces, including the National Guard and police, in crisis management, before deciding to go home for good.
              BUT THE draw of the Middle East and the work pulled him back. The next call was from the Kuwait global logistics firm supplying food to the military forces in Iraq.
              Agility Logistics was being targeted by Al Qaeda and the militia, and many staff were killed. They wanted Mitchell to improve security.
              “Security was being subcontracted and I discovered fairly early on that when the heat was on, our people weren’t a priority. One week, we lost 32 staff.”
              So the company set up subsidiary Threat Management Group to take security in-house. As CEO and shareholder, Mitchell grew the company from eight staff to about 500 in the first year.
              The quality of their work soon won them top-level contracts, including protecting crucial infrastructures like ports, and keeping supply chains open.
              Mitchell also became adept at kidnap and ransom negotiations, dealing with more than 100 hostage negotiations in Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia and Darfur.’

              • vto

                Sounds like Mitchell is the danger to innocent people.

                • Paul

                  Has certainly made a lot of money out of other people’s misfortune.
                  Most people saw the Iraq war as either a crime or a tragedy.
                  Mitchell saw it as an interesting opportunity.
                  Horrible.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                I have great respect for hostage negotiators, and there’s a big difference between a hostage negotiator and a quasi-military communications officer, whose job it is to smooth the path for his paymasters.

  6. Whateva next? 6

    Right from the start it was clear this man is not an organised terrorist, and spying on people has not stopped his actions either, nor will spying on people resolve this divide that is creating further disenfranchisement of lonely lost individuals.
    Rhetoric from Key will increase threat from other lonely lost people who would rather go down in a blaze of glory than be utterly irrelevant

    • Paul 6.1

      We’ve discovered the lengths the Americans went to get to go to war in Iraq in 2003. Sadly, Key seems determined for NZ to be going in 2014.

  7. stargazer 7

    also, we can see the 2-track approach working again. mr key tries to be the reasonable moderate, while kiwiblog & whaleoil spew out the hatred so that the PM doesn’t have to sound like john howard or tony abbott (although the latter has managed to be reasonably restrained in the last couple of days).

    i’m so glad ms vance has at least called mr key out for his nonsense. there is not a single measure in the countering terrorist fighters act that would have prevented this situation.

    • Paul 7.1

      Two track also occurring with surplus.
      It’s a blow to Bill English.
      ‘But Finance Minister Bill English was this morning still clinging to the hope Treasury is wrong ..’

      While Key gets mentioned in the following way when he quoted.
      “”For one thing inflation is running at a much lower level than was anticipated. That affects the Crown’s revenue. That’s actually a good news story for New Zealanders because it means their dollars are going further and their pay rises are more meaningful but it does have an impact on our income.”

      English is the incompetent one.
      Key cares about ordinary Kiwis.

      And our compliant corporate media allows his spin merchants to frame their stories in this way.

    • Paul 7.2

      Two track also occurring with surplus.
      It’s a blow to Bill English.
      ‘But Finance Minister Bill English was this morning still clinging to the hope Treasury is wrong ..’

      While Key gets mentioned in the following way when he quoted.
      “”For one thing inflation is running at a much lower level than was anticipated. That affects the Crown’s revenue. That’s actually a good news story for New Zealanders because it means their dollars are going further and their pay rises are more meaningful but it does have an impact on our income.”

      English is the incompetent one.
      Key cares about ordinary Kiwis.

      And our compliant corporate media allows his spin merchants to frame their stories in this way.

    • Tracey 7.3

      Plus one

  8. Clean_power 8

    I disagree: it is a badly written piece with more than enough clichés.
    [deleted]

    [lprent: I’m really not interested in having insinuation trolling reappear on this site. That appears to be the speciality of the sewer. Go back there. Banned for 3 months. ]

    • Tracey 8.1

      I guess you missed the bit where the Australian police say they are not convinced he was a terrorist. But what would they know compared to john “brain fade” key.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 8.1.1

        Dear Leader is 100% correct at all times, especially when he corrects his statements.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 8.2

      So, nothing substantive, and then a personal attack.

      Are you trying to embody the least charitable caricature of what it means to be right wing?

      • Clean_power 8.2.1

        [deleted]

        [lprent: see above. ]

        • Paul 8.2.1.1

          Seems totally irrelevant to the content of her article., which you have it addressed at all, apart from a critique of her writing style.
          Could you actually debate the issue, not attack the messenger?

        • Once wasTim 8.2.1.2

          “……….it is only an indication of her bias and pro-Labour stance.”
          Christ Almighty @ Clean Power. Next you’ll be telling us the lady dressed in couch upholstery business suits is biased towards ‘the Left’.

          Actually, I’m surprised no one has seen that little connection when Labour was leaking like a sieve (amongst the glitterati and well connected legends-in-their-own-minds).

          • Paul 8.2.1.2.1

            Clean power has done the necessary stirring.
            Will be back getting next orders as we speak.

            • Once wasTim 8.2.1.2.1.1

              Yep …. no doubt. Even the handle “Clean Power” looks to me like a pathetic and naive attempt at appealing to a “Left”. A classic CT instruction.
              A bit like that Jamie Lee after morning prayers, and just before he’s due to appear on Firstline – of course after Jacinda has shaved his back and made sure that pesky body hair doesn’t appear above the starched collar line. (Because she’s just such a nice regular gal and she’s succumbed to that ‘family’ known as parly arment – it pays the bills)

              I’ve no right to question, however (as a casual interloper on this site) it does amuse me at times the tolerance of the obvious txxxxs, as does the duplicate posters. I’m sure the Xprents are aware as well. So far though, their expertise in separating such things of where and how they post eludes anything technical that can be applied.

              But @ Paul …. it’s the era of the risk society – in which ‘the bleeding obvious’ is dead. (That is, right up until the time it bites them in the bum)

              • Paul

                The era of the risk society.
                Please expand…don’t really get what you mean.

                • Once wasTim

                  @ Paul.
                  I’ve now lost my train of thought (having had to depart our conversation for a while) but at the time I was thinking along the lines of how all risk has to be managed such that it becomes a spin merchant’s paradise: when there is the risk of emperor’s being perceived to have no clothes – the spin merchants and dirty politics kick in, and where basic honesty and being up front gets left behind.
                  The risk managers (such as the Clean Powers, The Blubbers and the Jamie Lees are at the ready to try and counter anything unfavourable. Ahhhh, but its all ok eh? – because “both sides do it”

        • One Anonymous Bloke 8.2.1.3

          Wow, you are trying to embody the least charitable caricature of what it means to be right wing: the querulous tone, more concerned by my skewering your shite ethics than you are in articulating the substance of your own ‘argument’.

          Not that you’ve even managed to get to Vance’s arguments yet.

          Think of me as base camp, gimp.

    • Paul 8.3

      You would think that.
      Members of cults lose the ability to think critically.
      However, cheer up. People have managed to escape the Moonies.
      You can leave the cult of Key too and return to sanity.

    • BM 8.4

      According to David Garrett [deleted].

      You can’t really take Vance seriously.

      [r0b: You’re a filthy piece of work BM. Banned until the new year.]

      [lprent: I do take Vance seriously. She has a pretty good record as a journalist – even when I disagree with her.

      On the other hand, David Garrett has about as much credibility as any other lawyer who has admitted that he deliberately lied to a court, been censured by the law society, and is an active participant in the sewer. He is, in my opinion, just another dishonourable misogynist prick who routinely shades the truth. For instance in his speeches on the effects of 3 strikes legislation.

      It wouldn’t surprise me if he is just lying. He really is that kind of disgusting arsehole. (And for the charming slimeball Garrett, lprent == Lynn Prentice, and I’ve never been “anonymous”. Nor is anyone else on this site).

      Banned for a further 6 months for using him as a source on our site. ]

  9. Grantoc 9

    Andrea’s opinions are very likely to be influenced by her own experience of the spying agencies when she was exposed exchanging emails with Peter Dunne.

    This means in my opinion that she is more critical than most commentators of the spy agencies and their masters. This leads to her to be an incisive analyst on these matters, but I also wonder if she allows a degree of bitterness to cloud this insight and her judgement.

    She is too strident and critical at times which I suspect alienates a large proportion of the population (if they bothered to read her). For instance I thought that Key’s comments on the Australian situation were pretty mild overall.

    However she has a point of view and she is entitled to express it of course.

    But I reckon that hers will be a minority view on this specific incident in Sydney.

    • framu 9.1

      ” For instance I thought that Key’s comments on the Australian situation were pretty mild overall.”

      so using the deaths of innocent people at the hands of a lone gunman, who was known to authorities, and who wouldnt have been affected by any kind of new anti terror law (as he wasnt operating in secret) to ramp up fear of a terrorist attack, a totally separate type of incident, in nz in order to justify your anti democratic spying laws is mild to you?

      jesus wept – key is using the deaths of australians in a hostage situation to stoke the fires of fear and justify his actions – thats some sick shit

      • Grantoc 9.1.1

        To the extent that they were stoked, ‘the fires of fear’ were stoked by the incident itself.

        I doubt that Key’s comments had much influence at all. For one thing they were pretty much drowned out by the constant news feeds on the incident. Key’s opinions on the matter were marginalised.

        It probably suits your agenda to ‘stoke’ Key’s comments for your own ‘political’ gain. ‘Thats some sick shit’.

        • framu 9.1.1.1

          grow up grantoc and stop being a dick

          im discussing what key did in response to the event – it was sick, immature and ignorant. He WAS attempting to put more fuel on the fire to justify his actions on utterly unrelated laws

          And on what idiot planet to we judge the severity of someones comments by the general tone already at play?

          Where does that happen?

          If a bunch of people are talking about killing someone and the PM goes “yeah me too” do we then just say that because others said it its hunky dory?

  10. Clemgeopin 10

    Prime Minister Tony Abbott says;

    The Sydney siege gunman was not on any government terror watch lists despite having a long criminal history, mental instability and an “infatuation with extremism”

    Speaking in Sydney on Tuesday after laying flowers at a spontaneous memorial for the victims at Martin Place, Abbott said Monis was well known to federal and NSW police and ASIO, but “I don’t believe that he was on a terror watch list”.

    “If I can be candid with you, that is the question that we were asking ourselves around the national security committee of the cabinet today,” Abbott said.

    This begs the question:

    What is the point in all of us losing our freedom and privacy for warrant-less surveillance when these sort of attacks can not be stopped any way!

  11. Iron Sky 11

    KNOW YOUR RISK: DEATH BY MURDER, not tooo much terrorism… just poor people, killing poor people perchance because of shit economic policy:

    http://www.aic.gov.au/statistics/homicide.html

    Homicide statistics
    Over the past 18 years (1 July 1989 to 30 June 2007), the rate* of homicide incidents decreased from 1.9 in 1990-91 and 1992-93 to the second-lowest recorded rate, of 1.3, in 2006-07. *rate per 100,000 population.

    Murder is the predominant charge and has been throughout the 18-year data-collection period. In 2006-07, there were 230 murder charges, 28 manslaughter charges, one infanticide charge, and one unknown. The type of charge against an offender may change once the incident proceeds through the judicial process.

    In 2006-07, there were 260 homicide instances, involving 266 victims and 296 offenders.

    Note: The majority of homicide data presented below is derived from two main sources with different data collection cycles. The charts and tables derived from the Institute’s National Homicide Monitoring Program data set is collected on a financial year cycle. The other charts and tables are based on ABS data which is collected on a calendar year cycle.

  12. A Voter 12

    Our latest industry confirmed “The terrorist industry ” will take precedence over all other financial commitments of the govt
    WHAT are we fighting for dont give a damn next stop Iraq land
    Put down your books pickup a gun we goin to have a whole fun
    WE know how that turned out last time
    Maybe a national protest for NEUTRALITY would be the sanest thought for the next 3 yrs

  13. D'Esterre 13

    @ Grantoc: “This leads to her to be an incisive analyst on these matters, but I also wonder if she allows a degree of bitterness to cloud this insight and her judgement.”

    Bitterness: scarcely surprising, were that the case, given what happened to her at that time. Seems to me that her reporting on matters to do with the PM beforehand was, like most of the MSM, largely uncritical. That certainly isn’t so now.

    “But I reckon that hers will be a minority view on this specific incident in Sydney.”

    Ha! Seen or heard the commentary today? Famous last words, as the saying goes….

  14. saveNZ 14

    Monis was wanted in Iran and was asked to be extradited by the Iranian government 15 years ago.

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-30502094

    So he was wanted in Iran, out on bail for being implicated in murdering his wife and had apparently 50 charges against him for sexual violence?

    I think Key is talking porkies yet again.

    Far from being some Iranian terrorist – he was wanted in Iran for Fraud but the Australian government refused to hand him over.

    Yep maybe they share the same flawed intelligence as the GCSB and SIS and NSA.

    Someone which is (normally the government) needs to hold these spy agencies accountable. Far from protecting people they seem to be making poor judgements again and again.

    • Tracey 14.1

      In fairness some people from Iran wanted for crimes allegedly committed in that country are genuine refugees and in need of protection from extradition back.

  15. Sable 15

    Oh Keys wont be on his own. Old phony Tony will be getting as much mileage out of this as he can too.

    The reality is the whole terrorist policy that has been crafted around the Middle East as started by the UK and continued by Washington is one of racism and war engineered to justify pretty blatant resource theft.

    The result of course is radicalism on the part of anyone who feels affronted by this. The tragedy in Sydney is one expression of this on the part of a man who sounds like he had considerable issues but it is by no means isolated; the bombings in the US/UK/Spain.

    Sadly there will no doubt be more to follow from unbalanced individuals and possibly groups of radicals if governments around the world insist on towing the official US line.

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