Around 1500 people turned up this evening at the Auckland town hall for the GCSB meeting. Good to see a collection of political party members there, and a variety of really good speakers. Surely Key must get the idea by now that this bill is universally unpopular, and stands to be the straw that broke the camels back for his re-election chances next year. I would like to think that at least one National party member has the conscince and fortitude to walk the floor on this terrible bill. Doing so would spell political suicide for that member, but they will go down in history as a hero. Keys weak pandering to the media, claiming among other things that he will ban the wholesale reading of the publics email by the GCSB doesn’t wash, and Shearer was very quick to point out, if this is the case, why is it not enshrined in legislation, why not. Unfortunately we only have to look at the US example, and see what happened with the FISA Amendments Act of 2008 (a bill in some ways very similar to what is being proposed here. Take a look here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FISA_Amendments_Act_of_2008 ), the GCSB will be an uncontrollable juggernaut. I wonder who Key is now more scarred of, the public, or his US masters?
On a very Orwellian note, David Miranda, the side kick to journalist Glenn Greenwald (who was responsible for publishing Edward Snowden’s leak in the Guardian) was held under the “Terrorism Act” at Heathrow Airport for the maximum permissible 9 hours and interrogated. While he was then allowed to continue on to his home destination in South America, he was made to give up all his electronics, laptop, USB sticks etc. This is obviously sending a very clear message to the media at large, “You print something we don’t like, you will be harassed”. So much for freedom of media, and freedom of speech. Judging by the whole Peter Dunne and Andrea Vance saga here, with the illegal interception of emails (soon to be legitimised. Remember, “If it’s legal, it’s okay” … ), I think we are well on our way to following a similar pattern. People should be looking over their shoulder, for a very good reason.
- Hard News: The GCSB Bill: eleventh-hour arguments (publicaddress.net)
- Prime Minister’s latest GCSB promise attracts criticism (radionz.co.nz)
- Anti-GCSB protesters march on Prime Minister’s home (radionz.co.nz)
- Rowdy crowd protest GCSB Bill at meeting (stuff.co.nz)
- GCSB Bill protest meeting held in Auckland (nzherald.co.nz)
- NZ Politics Daily – 19 August 2013: A Marvellous GCSB debate (liberation.typepad.com)
- Bryce Edwards: Political round-up: A marvellous GCSB debate (nzherald.co.nz)