Clark on GCSB

August 4th, 2013 at 4:59 am by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

Former Prime Minister has confirmed the executed intercept warrants for the SIS during her Government but spying on New Zealanders “wasn’t their remit”.

Clark, speaking in advance of the release of her new book At The UN, about her first four-year term as Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme, said she was always “loyally and diligently” served by the intelligence services.

Clark said the Government Communications and Security Bureau acted within the law “as it was understood to be” and this included executing warrants for the Security Intelligence Service.

“I can assure you that I was always advised that what was being signed was legal.”

Yet Labour and Greens are opposed to the GCSB doing what it did under Helen Clark – assist the dSIS. The problem is the law passed by Clark does not make it clear if the clause saying it will not monitor NZers over-rides the clause saying it can assist other agencies such as the SIS.

She rejected that the Government Security Communications Bureau routinely spied on New Zealanders as that was “not part of their remit”.

And still will not be, despite the hysteria. In fact the bill will provide greater transparency than in the past over what work the GCSB does do.

Her book, At The UN, is a collection of speeches Clark has given in her first four-year term at the UN.

Am sure it will be a best seller. Sadly not yet available on Amazon.

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67 Responses to “Clark on GCSB”

  1. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    Clark has raised a few eyebrows with her spying on New Zealanders “wasn’t their remit” comment. Someone suggested she hadn’t read the Kitteridge report, which detailed:

    In relation to NZSIS, between 1 April 2003 and 26 September 2012, GCSB provided 55 instances of assistance to NZSIS, which potentially involved 85 New Zealand citizens or permanent residents.

    In relation to the New Zealand Police, between 1 April 2003 and 1 January 2009, GCSB provided assistance to the Police in one instance, which potentially involved three New Zealand citizens or permanent residents.

    It is very likely the Police case happened under Clark’s watch, her government was ousted in November 2008.

    It is likely that some of the 55 instances involving the SIS were authorised by Clark. And prior to the current Act there are likely to have been more instances, during the first term of the Clark government from 1999.

    It was long-standing practice – going back to before the enactment of the GCSB Act in 2003 – for GCSB to provide assistance (i.e. its specialist capabilities) to the NZSIS on the basis of NZSIS warrants.

    Perhaps Clark is still thinking in terms of the past GCSB view that when they spied for the SIS or police they were acting as an agency and therefore not bound by the “no New Zealanders” rule. They (and she?) had determined that in those cases they weren’t doing the spying, they were providing a spy service to the other agencies.

    Clark must have been familiar with this. It was her government that put the law in place in 2003, and she would have usually been the minister in charge of issuing warrants.

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  2. BeaB (2,104 comments) says:

    You have to hand it to her – the mistress of Stalin’s big lies.

    Now in charge of the biggest slush fund in the history of the world.

    No end to the corruption .

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  3. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    More detail on Helen Clark – spying on New Zealanders “wasn’t their remit”

    The current law was Clark’s law, the practice of the GCSB spying on behalf of other agencies was put in place and used by Clark for over five years. A key phrase she uses is within the law “as it was understood to be”.

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  4. Nostradamus (3,252 comments) says:

    Up early blogging about the GCSB, Pete? :)

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  5. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    Up early playing interference Nostradamus? Do you ignore DPF because of his time difference? Or is it just your turn to continue wee bit of targeting?

    A seemingly concerted effort to shoosh things up may be counter productive.

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  6. Nostradamus (3,252 comments) says:

    Pete:

    Let’s take stock of this thread:

    1. DPF posts at 4:59 am.
    2. You post at 5:43am
    3. You then follow up with a link to your blog at 6:07am.
    4. When I observe you’re up early blogging, you then accuse me of “playing interference”.

    Once again, as others have previously observed, you’re more than a wee bit sensitive about this particular topic.

    By the way, I speak for myself and only for myself at Kiwiblog, so not a case of “just [my] turn”.

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  7. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    Who’s a tad sensitive?

    It’s not early for me, I’m usually up at this sort of time. Don’t often see you here at this time of day.

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  8. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    Given Clark has spoken on a topic she could have legitimately avoided on the grounds of not being seen to be interfering in NZ politics, and so clearly supporting the PMs view of the situation, it would seem that Shearer has lost another avenue of support for his leadership.

    Quite possibly a slap in the wrist for Grant Robertson too.

    I think Clark was sending them a message to focus on what is important. And this ain’t it.

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  9. Manolo (13,517 comments) says:

    Up early blogging about the GCSB, Pete?

    The very onerous task of defending the whore Dunne knows to timetable.
    What’s food or sleep? To the grave for the corrupt master.

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  10. Reg (544 comments) says:

    In relation to the New Zealand Police, between 1 April 2003 and 1 January 2009, GCSB provided assistance to the Police in one instance, which potentially involved three New Zealand citizens or permanent residents.

    Exclusive Brethren?

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  11. Nostradamus (3,252 comments) says:

    Pete:

    A seemingly concerted effort to shoosh things up may be counter productive.

    Oh goodness no, Pete, how could anyone make you “shoosh things up”?

    The 10 most recent posts on your blog, at the time of writing, are as follows:

    1. Helen Clark – spying on New Zealanders “wasn’t their remit”
    2. GCSB bill – what Labour want
    3. Henry inquiry – emails on emails
    4. Henry inquiry e-mail disgrace upon disgraces
    5. Does Peter Dunne’s story stack up now?
    6. Henry Inquiry timeline
    7. Henry inquiry – the custard has just curdled
    8. Peters accuses Dunne of five leaks
    9. Peters claims Fairfax and Beehive leaks
    10. Harawira – we pay $495 per day expenses

    So 9 out of your last 10 posts over the past 2 days or so relate (directly or indirectly) to the GCSB.

    I’m curious about why you’re more than a bit obsessed with this topic.

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  12. Manolo (13,517 comments) says:

    Orders from above, orders from his master. Ohariu-Belmont must be held at any price.

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  13. burt (8,189 comments) says:

    Clark chimes in making shit up again to pretend its different when Labour do it. The words from NZ’s first retrospectively validated PM …. Yes yes we believe you dear leader… Sign another painting for us and spend another $800,000 on pretty photo shopped pictures then use parliament to kill the court case you don’t think you should have to face…
    Then tell us some BS to make yourself look good.

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  14. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    Nostradamus – actually that’s on two separate topics, the Henry inquiry and the GCSB bill.

    The GCSB bill is very topical, it’s by far the most talked about bill currently going through Parliament. There have been protest meetings, national protest marches, and it is getting substantial media coverage.

    The Henry inquiry is the hottest media topic this week, and may well be the biggest political story of the year. There has been a significant resignation, and more repercussions and possibly resignations are predicted.

    I suggest if you aren’t interested don’t bother with threads like this dedicated to the GCSB. Note what it’s called. DPF must be obsessed.

    You will find Muslims, religion and AGW at General Debate if you prefer to rehash the same old over and over. But if you want to moan there too I’ll foment some happy mischief.

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  15. Nostradamus (3,252 comments) says:

    Pete:

    Actually DPF manages to find plenty of other topics to blog about. His most recent 10 blog posts looks nothing like yours.

    And guess who commented linkwhored first on the General Debate thread, and about what?

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  16. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    Funny Nostradamus, I guess you didn’t read my last comment ^^.

    This thread is “Clark on GCSB”, but it’s looking more like “Nostradamus on and on and on PG”. Standard diversion, won’t work.

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  17. slightlyrighty (2,506 comments) says:

    Those opposed to the GCSB bill in it’s proposed form, that being Labour, The Greens and Winston First, have been calling for those who have been spied on by the GCSB (legally, insofar as Aunty Helen is concerned) to be informed as such. I would love to see that happen, but publically, along with dates of warrants and who signed them off.

    Perhaps then we can see illustrated for once and for all the need for the amendments to the legislation, and certain people would have a bit of egg on their face.

    Of course this is nought but a pipedream. This information should not be released as the actions of our intelligence services should remain covert. Labour know this and this allows Labour to criticise with impunity, knowing full well that the evidence that will expose them for the liars they are can never see the light of day. Helen Clarks comments in this case are welcomed by me, but they do leave enough doubt and ambiguity for the MSM to spin it in a way advantageous to their own editorial positions, whatever those may be.

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  18. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    More bloggers “obsessed by this topic”

    Keeping Stock: “As it was understood to be”
    Whale Oil: That settles it then, no illegal spying, Helen said so

    They usually get up early too, checking what’s prominent.

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  19. jims_whare (403 comments) says:

    I am sure her book will be a wonderful literary asset.

    Especially for Dr’s with patients with protracted insomnia – yes Mrs Jones read one chapter per night before bed and you will be fast asleep well before the end of the first page.

    (Might have to be careful about any nightmares which follow)

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  20. Steve (North Shore) (4,540 comments) says:

    Someone once told me that I did a painting, so I signed it

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  21. Keeping Stock (10,264 comments) says:

    Ironically, Helen Clark’s comments actually justify what the Government is doing with the GCSB Bill. Clearly there was ambiguity over what GCSB could and couldn’t do; the Kitteridge report makes that clear. So where there is ambiguity, the law needs to be rewritten.

    As Clark was wont to say “Nothing to see here; move on”. She has effectively pulled the rug out from under those who are protesting against the Bill.

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  22. niggly (816 comments) says:

    Good on Helen Clark for explaining the obvious that the GCSB does NOT spy on NZers. (The SIS or Police, under warrant, does the spying. On occasion GCSB may provide some technical support for Police/SIS a la the case of the 88 NZers etc).

    One would think so-called intelligent journalists would understand this “obvious” distinction, but clearly the likes of Andrea Vance, Tracey Watkins, the Radio NZ news team and editors, TV3 etc are thick as pig shit because the “obvious” distinction has been pointed out before time and time again but they deliberately ignore the truth and manufacture dissent.

    Big bad buckets of shit for dumping over Opposition Politician heads especially Robertson, Norman and Shearer for knowing this all along but continuing to play politics and denigrate public servants such as the GCSB, by using them in their continual smear campaign against the Prime Minister. Nasty negative politics.

    Robertson, Norman and Shearer – unfit to be taxpayer funded MP’s for exploiting national security to further their own selfish ends, costing the scalps of Dunne and civil servants, wasting taxpayer funding to spend countless hundreds if not thousands of hours in the pursuit of deception and misinformation.

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  23. kiwi in america (2,495 comments) says:

    Clark has inadvertently killed the Labour Greens narrative – that the GCSB’s work for the SIS and other agencies was and is illegal and wrong and the tidying up legislation is equally wrong. Key can quote Clark in his every answer to Labour/Greens Parliamentary questions on this subject.

    Peter George
    You have become obsessed with this Henry enquiry stuff – not sure if Dunn’s reversal and backing of the GCSB Bill hasn’t blown a fuse for you. Your ‘sky is falling’ biggest political story of the year just doesn’t pass the middle NZ voter smell test. I’m in regular almost daily contact with people on the ground in NZ and when I ask about the email scandal they say what scandal – people know faux outrage from the media when they see it. We’ve been here before – the hysteria over the Dotcom raid and the teapot tapes – all were going to be the demise of Key along with a few others along the way. Scandals that kill governments have to be clearly seen, easily explained and quickly grasped by Waitakere Man. An example of a break through scandal was the pledge card rort, the Philip Field corruption and the EFA. Tortuous, tendentious and repetitive questions in Parliaments that try and thread a needle to implicate Key in either a scandal or a coverup fall flat every time and when a ‘scandal’ only had legs because of MSM media and left leaning political parties exaggerations and dead horse flogging they end up going nowhere. Voters want to know if Labour Greens can do a better job than National running the economy – that is the due diligence process going on right now. The polls are telling us Labour/Shearer is not up to the job in the eyes of voters. The media harping on about Kim Dotcom, the GCSB and who sent what email in the Henry enquiry does not assist swinging voters one iota in that decision making process hence their bored disinterest. You have been inside the beltway for too long now and it’s showing.

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  24. Keeping Stock (10,264 comments) says:

    Excellent analysis KIA. A golfing friend is a retired journalist and newspaper editor. He was scathing yesterday about the tactics used by today’s journalists, and the faux outrage over them being held accountable.

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  25. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    KS – yes, Clark is endorsing the regime she put in place, which will be clarified, oversight will be improved and will be regularly improved under the current amendment bill.

    Scrapping legislation and starting from scratch can cause as many problems as it solves.

    Incremental improvements are safer and usually better. Not only does the GCSB bill largely improve on what we have got, it also provides for future reviews and improvements.

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  26. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    KIA – I’m not inside the beltway.

    I have acknowledged that it’s a beltway issue, and I know the general public aren’t interested. But it is a big beltway issue, with more belting sure to come. If not dealt with properly it could impact significantly on Key’s credibility and trust with media. And that has major implications for Key and for National. Like it or not if the media are against you it’s bloody hard to get good press. And that can drive polls and elections.

    So most people don’t care. But I’m sure Key cares a lot, especially this weekend. I expect a different approach from him next week to try and rescue the situation. If he doesn’t it will remain to keep haunting him. The ghosts of media are beltway too, but they can belt politicians into oblivion.

    And in fact there’s quite a bit of interest on KB looking at the number of links through to GCSB posts.

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  27. RossM (39 comments) says:

    >Clark said the Government Communications and Security Bureau acted within the law “as it was understood to be” and this included executing warrants for the Security Intelligence Service.

    Which is the understanding of the law that applied when the warrant for Dotcom was signed. And is what the present Bill is trying to put in place legally.

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  28. JC (942 comments) says:

    I found these Clark comments just as interesting..

    ” Her time in the United Nations, and living in New York, had reinforced the idea that New Zealand was “in a race to the top”.

    “We have to keep lifting our game. We need smarter and better businesses. We need highly motivated people at all levels of skill and ability.”

    That could have been said by any National Minister and coming from her is perhaps a reminder to Shearer and co to start being an Opposition.

    JC

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  29. hj (6,813 comments) says:

    Who would Clark support?:

    “But how things have changed. Population statistics confirm what should be apparent to anyone walking down Auckland’s Queen St: New Zealand has undergone a quiet revolution. In a remarkably short time, we have been transformed from one of the western world’s most homogeneous societies into one of the most ethnically diverse. Spoonley describes Auckland as one of the world’s major destination cities, comparing it with Toronto and Vancouver.
    //
    As revolutions go, it could hardly have been quieter. I don’t recall the Government making a policy announcement to the effect that New Zealand would be opening its doors to the world. There was no great debate, no public meetings. It happened incrementally and largely without fuss.
    //
    But the New Zealand immigration experience, thus far at least, has been painless. Most New Zealanders seem to welcome the colour and diversity provided by immigrant communities.
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/nelson-mail/opinion/columnists/karl-du-fresne/7392080/NZ-quietly-becomes-diverse-society
    ……………..
    Hypothetically ideas and concerns opposing may not get a voice other than on talk back radio or letters to the editor. Imagine if you have a choice of John Campbell/ Chris laidlaw and Mike Hosking (and include advertisers). Also opinions are managed as when the terms are set by the Productivity Commision to be “realatively un controversial”. Then you have National, Labour and the Keith Locke factor in a thing called the “Green ” Party. Another factor is that well off liberals like to distinguish themselves by aligning with immigrants and are higher up the pecking chain so unworried about housing, quality of life.
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/money/4622459/Government-policies-blamed-for-house-prices

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  30. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    Clark just being interviewed on Q+A, she acknowledged Kitteridge identified a hole her 2003 legislation and that needs to be addressed, pretty much as it is being addressed.

    So she is supporting the Government action.

    Her only criticism was that all parties should be working together to sort it out. So far only three parties have involved themselves in doing this. The rest are bitching opponents.

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  31. jakejakejake (150 comments) says:

    Yes all opposition parties should kneel and suck like Dunne.

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  32. niggly (816 comments) says:

    Clark has inadvertently killed the Labour Greens narrative

    Also killed off KimDotCom’s narrative around the GCSB “spying on all NZers” meme he promotes (as if all NZer’s are involved with running file sharing sites similar to Megaupload etc). Also kills of KDC’s narrative that the GCSB were illegally involved in the raid on his mansion.

    I wonder if the muppet authors at The Scumdard will now change their continual narrative about the GCSB “spying”on NZers?

    Martin Bradbury and the Union organisers that led last week’s protests are shown up again to be deceitful liars.

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  33. burt (8,189 comments) says:

    So all parties should work together to sort it out…
    Just like when it was drafted eh Auntie.
    Talk the talk alright.

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  34. kiwi in america (2,495 comments) says:

    Peter George
    Centre right governments the world over know the media is almost always against them – this latest outage is business as usual. By your own admission no one cares out there in voter land. Unless someone finds an email from John Key to Parliamentary Services ordering them to hand over Vance’s emails then all we have here are messy cocks up by bureaucrats. Key’s demeanour surely will change – when someone in DPMC cocks up and fails to the tell the PM for a WEEK, heads are going to roll and it won’t be Key’s – much as Labour and the media hope will be the case. You are inside the beltway in that the minute media and political punditry machinations on this subject have greatly excited you causing you to see this issue much as they do.

    Clark has actually marvelously underscored why this law change is needed – she neatly encapsulated the legal conundrum that arose from her last minute pandering to the Alliance with the 2003 law – that Clark signed warrants allowing GCSB to ‘spy on NZers’, thought it perfectly legal, got similar legal advice that Key got saying the same thing and yet technically was in breach of a clause of the 2003 Act. If the media weren’t so obsessed with themselves and getting angry about the same leaks that are the stock in trade of their craft, they would be exposing the age old hypocrisy of the left – these grey areas are fine when they are in power but an outrageous abuse of civil liberties when the right is in power.

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  35. alwyn (410 comments) says:

    I wonder if Helen has been leaned on by John Key to go along with him on this.
    I imagine she wants another term at the UN and the job will be coming up next year.
    Key cannot give her the job for another term but he can certainly prevent her being re-appointed. They will never give an important role to anyone who is not supported by their own country’s government.
    I think she is much more interested in her own career options than she is in the woes of the Labour party.

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  36. kiwi in america (2,495 comments) says:

    The other great thing that Aunty Helen’s foray into this subject has done – it has revealed how far to the left Labour have lurched to appease the Greens and their lefty activist base and the irresponsible claptrap served up by Shearer and Robertson over this legislation. Clark has reinforced and demonstrated the gulf in quality between her government (as bad as it was) and the current Labour opposition. Clark has made a rational case for the GCSB Bill. I can just hear the National backbencher patsy question to the PM “Has the Prime Minister heard any other reports about the reasons for the GCSB Amendment Bill”!

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  37. flipper (3,941 comments) says:

    Niggly said (and said well)…
    *** ” …One would think so-called intelligent journalists would understand this “obvious” distinction, but clearly the likes of Andrea Vance, Tracey Watkins, the Radio NZ news team and editors, TV3 etc are thick as pig shit because the “obvious” distinction has been pointed out before time and time again but they deliberately ignore the truth and manufacture dissent. ” ***

    And they would NOT know the difference (or would deliberately ignore it) between shit and clay, when held in their hands.

    Actually I give Clark a tick this morning for diplomacy AND for kicking Shearer, Commissar red melon, the media et al. Sadly, they are just too thick to understand.

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  38. wat dabney (3,755 comments) says:

    Clark was a woman of principle; albeit evil principles.

    Shearer is just a pathetic opportunist who will say and do anything to get his corrupt labour cartels into power.

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  39. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    “You are inside the beltway in that the minute media and political punditry machinations on this subject have greatly excited you causing you to see this issue much as they do. ”

    I have an interest in some beltway type issues but have a from the outside view of it all. I’ve never been on the inside of the political scene. Unlike you – you still talk of having political contacts.

    Remember that Kiwiblog is not wider New Zealand, it is people who have an interest in politics. It’s sort of normal to discuss the political issues of the day here, isn’t it? I’m not trying to lecture people having breakfast at McDonalds.

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  40. flipper (3,941 comments) says:

    alwyn (182) Says:
    August 4th, 2013 at 9:49 am
    I wonder if Helen has been leaned on by John Key to go along with him on this.
    I imagine she wants another term at the UN and the job will be coming up next year.
    Key cannot give her the job for another term but he can certainly prevent her being re-appointed.
    <<<>>>

    Actually, that (sad to say) is bullshit.

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  41. Nookin (3,263 comments) says:

    Why are people castigating Clark over this. Her comments are the best endorsement that the GCSB Bill could ever get. And she has told the Greens and Labour to stop acting like spoiled brats to grow up and work together on this.

    Shearer says that the Government won’t share information. I thought that the leader of the opposition was briefed on work by the Director on a regular basis. Is Shearer like Goff and forgets everything the minute that the director has gone out the door? Is this why Goff has been silent on all this? He knows it is just bullshit?

    Shearer knows that this Bill is needed. He is playing politics on what should be a non-partisan issue and no-one is calling him on this.

    I forget, when was it that Vance asked Shearer what briefings he gets, what incidents are reported and the extent of his understanding? Oh that’s right, balance is not relevant when you see yourself as the protector of the free world!

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  42. davidp (3,573 comments) says:

    KIA>Your ‘sky is falling’ biggest political story of the year just doesn’t pass the middle NZ voter smell test.\

    Agreed. Unemployment is down. Incomes are up. The economy is growing. In terms of income we’re a more equal country than even Canada. And our government finances are in MUCH better shape than most of the western world, including Australia. People aren’t going to abandon National and start voting for Dunne just because a Datacom technician sent Dunne’s e-mails to Henry. Especially since Henry returned them unopened.

    Most of what the media and the protesters claim is in the GCSB Bill, isn’t in the Bill. I believe that the Snowden issues are driving a lot of the misinformation and hysteria. For two reasons:

    1. A lot of the Left (and especially the Greens) don’t really have a domestic NZ philosophy. They’re importing their issues and concerns from overseas. We saw this recently in Australia where misbehaviour by a UK newspaper was used to justify controls on the Australian media. We’re seeing it now in NZ with people talking about “spying” on NZers as if the Bill allows GCSB to set up a PRISM-style program. Most Green policies are imported, so the Greens are worried about conserving water even tho that’s one thing we have in abundance and they espouse a bunch of other Northern-European solutions to things that just aren’t problems in NZ. And we saw it last week when Labour’s racist housing policies were justified on the basis that a few other countries were doing it. It’s all a very colonial mentality.

    2. Like I said a few days ago… Most of the protesters would love to be spied on. That’s make them Edward Snowdens rather than Penny Brights. Lefties want to be adored by the media while they fight the establishment. They don’t want us to realise that most of them are mad old cat ladies.

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  43. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    Shearer knows that this Bill is needed. He is playing politics on what should be a non-partisan issue and no-one is calling him on this.

    Correct. His latest: Drop GCSB bill, Dunne urged

    Shearer is trying to have it both ways, oppose the bill (because that’s what his strategists tell him to do) but support the bill that his favoured review comes up with, which will probably be much like the current proposal.

    But he has the wrong end of both sticks.

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  44. graham (2,328 comments) says:

    Pete George: I’ve never been on the inside of the political scene. Unlike you – you still talk of having political contacts.

    Pardon? You stood as a candidate for Parliament in Dunedin North in 2011, you’re in constant contact with Peter Dunne, you regularly email other MPs seeking their views on various subjects – and you claim you’ve “never been on the inside of the political scene”? Unlike kiwi in america who “still talks of having political contacts”???

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  45. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    graham – I’m certain that none of the politicians I have contact with would see me as a political insider. Far from it. There’s a lot of commenters here who are much more inside politics than me. I’m very much a fringe dabbler.

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  46. publicwatchdog (2,516 comments) says:

    Good moaning Kiwibloggers.

    How is the current Government Communications Security Bureau Act 2003 not CRYSTAL CLEAR – that interceptions are NOT to target domestic communications???

    Here you go.

    Read it for yourselves:

    http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/2003/0009/latest/DLM187841.html

    Restrictions imposed on interceptions

    14 Interceptions not to target domestic communications

    Neither the Director, nor an employee of the Bureau, nor a person acting on behalf of the Bureau may authorise or take any action for the purpose of intercepting the communications of a person (not being a foreign organisation or a foreign person) who is a New Zealand citizen or a permanent resident.

    ___________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Penny Bright
    ‘Anti-corruption/anti-privatisation’ campaigner

    2013 Auckland Mayoral candidate

    ‘Penny Bright vs John Key’ (on the GCSB)
    http://www.occupyaucklandvsaucklandcouncilappeal.org.nz/?p=195

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  47. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    Clark has inadvertently killed the Labour Greens narrative

    KIA,

    I don’t think it was inadvertent at all. Although I think she believes the position she gave, I think she came out with it deliberately to force the current Labour leadership to drop the topic and focus on the things that can attract voter support.

    It would also not have escaped her that if the Greens maintain their line and the perception of them being out of touch with what is important grows, then the support they have picked up from disaffected Labour people over the past couple of years is more likely to return to Labour, strengthening their position.

    She also hammered another nail in Shearer’s leadership coffin.

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  48. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    Re Penny’s claim – the Kitteridge report said:

    The understanding within the Bureau (as reflected in its internal guidance) was that metadata was not a “communication” for the purposes of the prohibition expressed in section 14 of the GCSB Act. It was the view within GCSB that GCSB could, on request, lawfully obtain and provide information about metadata involving New Zealanders, without the authority of a warrant, in accordance with its function of co-operating with and providing assistance to public authorities.

    That was a view supported by Helen Clark.

    At Dunne’s instigation Key has agreed to look at and clarify the definition of ‘communications’ in relation to metadata.

    Mr Dunne will be working alongside the Minister of Justice on the issues raised by the Law Commission’s 2010 report “Invasion of Privacy: Penalties and Remedies.”

    This review will include the definition of private communication (and metadata) to ensure a standard definition is developed for insertion in the GCSB and NZSIS Acts, and all relevant legislation such as the Crimes Act and the Search and Surveillance Act.

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  49. wiseowl (859 comments) says:

    kiwi in usa@9.54
    And it shows how far left the National Government has lurched.

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  50. kiwi in america (2,495 comments) says:

    graham
    Yep summed up Peter George. You also forgot to mention his claims to be on the inside of United Future given his frequent pronouncements on UF policies and all things Dunne. Nothing wrong with that but its a bit precious to claim he’s not a beltway insider.

    bhudson
    Agreed – Clark is trying to inject some grown up discussion into the debate (the way Labour and National used to be on national security issues – it used to be one of the few areas that were largely exempt from the hurly burly of partisan politics). The radicalization of Labour due to fighting with the Greens for the left vote and the desperation of Shearer to get traction on anything against Key lies behind Labour’s blatant politicization of the GCSB debate. Clark is no dummie – she knew the type of votes that kept her PM for 3 terms and how easily current Labour policy and tactics are driving more of the centre in National’s arms. She likely sees herself as saving Labour from itself. Be interesting to see how the fetid swamps at the Stranded are coping with Dear Leader destroying the left’s GCSB meme.

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  51. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    No one else is interested in this either.

    Spy scandal close to home

    After Snowden, Assange and PRISM, New Zealand finds itself caught in its own spy drama; calls are mounting for an independent inquiry into the country’s intelligence services after revelations that journalists’ phone calls have been monitored and private records handed to third parties.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-08-03/spy-scandal-close-to-home/4863628

    In may be mainly confined within various beltways and political interest groups but there is noticeable interest worldwide in spy related issues.

    You can diss it, but you can’t dismiss it.

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  52. kiwi in america (2,495 comments) says:

    PG
    The left leaning ABC are happy to publicize the possible embarrassment of a centre right government even one in NZ. Having the ABC report on the GCSB scandal is not even close to proof that its a breakthrough issue for Joe sixpack in NZ. To think so only confirms your beltway thinking. Now your persistent blogging about it mans you are invested in the sandal widening if only to save face.

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  53. Manolo (13,517 comments) says:

    Am I the only one fed up with P. Ure G.’s GCSB rantings and monomaniacal obsession?
    His defense of Dunne is pathetic to the extreme.

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  54. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    If you are Moanolo you could always actually comment on something else.

    KIA – I didn’t say anything about “breakthrough issue for Joe sixpack in NZ”. I was referring to international interest, which there seems to be a little bit of.

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  55. Nookin (3,263 comments) says:

    Penny

    Why don’t you read all of the relevant legislation instead of cherry-picking those sections that, in isolation, support your preconceived view. It’s called intellectual honesty — a concept that you have difficulty understanding.

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  56. big bruv (13,678 comments) says:

    Manolo

    Oh I dunno, it is sometimes fun to watch somebody desperately trying to defend the indefensible.

    Although I do wonder what special type of narcissist can honestly believe that he and only he can see what the rest of the population do not see in the independent MP for Ohariu.

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  57. jcuk (664 comments) says:

    All this talk of killing the left’s arguments is plain self delusionment and the left want an inquiry as to what is needed to protect New Zeland rather than the currently obscenely hasty ramming through Parliament of a bill objected to by almost most Kiwi’s judging from the votes. I support John Key and the National Party but not on this bill which should have been written and supported by an overwhelming majority …. not just one vote.

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  58. graham (2,328 comments) says:

    Pete George – a “fringe dabbler” in politics?

    Seriously? Do you really expect anyone who has spent more than 5 minutes at any one of the several blogs you frequent to read that without laughing out loud?

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  59. Pete George (23,426 comments) says:

    You’ve busted me there graeme, I’m a significant influence in Wellington. John Key reads all my blogs to keep up with the play – and probably all my emails too.

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  60. kiwi in america (2,495 comments) says:

    jcuk
    The only thing keeping Labour from supporting this legislation is Shearer’s desperate need to find something anything to attack National over plus to prevent too much leakage of left leaning voters to the Greens. Clark’s public pronouncements on the GCSB reflect the type of bi-partisan sentiment that in previous governments would’ve resulted in legislation that both major parties could’ve supported. This meme of ramming through arises only from Labour’s immature intransigence not because the legislation is so fundamentally flawed. Peters likewise wants to grandstand and be the deal maker but was unable to extract obvious concessions that he could brag about so he pulled back on potential support especially when it looked likely that Key was going to proceed with just ACT and Dunne.

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  61. David Garrett (6,952 comments) says:

    How does Penny pay for all these websites she sets up?

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  62. UglyTruth (4,551 comments) says:

    Intelligence problems in the US…

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  63. Ryan Sproull (7,093 comments) says:

    As long as the bill makes sure that no one who breached the law before the bill became law will be charged, I’m happy.

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  64. MiniBus (6 comments) says:

    Remember, there has also been law changes in regards to how the SiS operate, which is a contributing factor to problems with the spying we have now …. its a manufactured problem that is heading in one direction to reduce our freedoms

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  65. RRM (9,770 comments) says:

    The good old days…. When Labour had a leader with balls. :-P

    And a brain.

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  66. goldnkiwi (1,256 comments) says:

    I guess we are all really glad that the ‘bad’ guys have to follow guidelines and protocols and make sure they stay within the letter of the law. There are no longer ‘rules’ of engagement people. I guess the USA Embassies in lock down are grateful to have a heads up, while we expect ourselves just to keep our head down!!!

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  67. UglyTruth (4,551 comments) says:

    Alkayeeda is in banking too! Whooda thunk it?

    Global banking giant HSBC is closing the accounts of foreign diplomats in Britain and giving them 60 days to move their money, a report said Sunday.
    More than 40 embassies and consulates are said to have been affected, including the Vatican, with the decision being described as creating “havoc” in the diplomatic corps.

    http://www.foxnews.com/world/2013/08/04/hsbc-bank-closing-accounts-for-diplomats-in-britain/

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