Posts by Idiot Savant

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  • Hard News: So long, and thanks for all…,

    David Shearer seems a genuinely decent man who has been out of his depth in a party leadership role but clearly has a contribution to make yet.

    I think he'll make a fine foreign affairs or aid minister.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1592 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Naked Inside the Off-Ramp, in reply to Keir Leslie,

    Also, it's not really fair to say Labour's always the party of the status quo on these issues. Nuclear free NZ, anyone?

    Point. But on spying? Abolishing the GCSB and closing Waihopai is official Green policy. What's Labour's?

    (reading that policy document, I'm optimistic for a compromise. But its going to have to include something hugely symbolic for the Greens, in addition to sensible changes around oversight which both parties agree on. Removal of "economic wellbeing" from the definition of domestic "security" would probably do it, and I think would be quite liveable for Labour as well, since all it leads to is SIS politicisation, over-reach and scandals)

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1592 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Naked Inside the Off-Ramp, in reply to Kyle Matthews,

    I'd imagine that after horsetrading post-review, they'll vote for it if it improves the GCSB in the way they want it. Why would they vote against a bill that pushes the GCSB in the direction that they believe it should go, as part of a coalition government?

    Oh, they'll vote for it. But there are going to be difficulties satisfying their own base. If Labour's reforms are simply a humiliating sop with no real change, then the Greens will be facing a real risk of becoming Alliance 2.0. And in those circumstances the lesson is: pull the plug, go to the people, and get a stronger mandate from your supporters for your position. Anything else, and you cease to exist as a party.

    While there are people in Labour who hate the Greens and regard them as the enemy, this isn't in Labour's interests. They want to be in government, and they need a coalition partner on their left to do it.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1592 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Naked Inside the Off-Ramp, in reply to Keir Leslie,

    If there’s a credible independent inquiry into the security services, the spectacle of the National Party lining up to vote it down will be so damaging and ludicrous that of course they won’t (and if they do, well, that’s fine by me). Likewise, the Greens would love to get some serious reform here, and they won’t waste that chance — it’s the only one they’ll get for the next twenty years.

    And everyone involved is going to have to walk a tightrope. Many Green supporters don't want reform, they want abolition and a withdrawl from Five Eyes, and they will be joined by people outraged by the NSA leaks. Labour meanwhile is a party fundamentally of the status quo, who support the national security state and always have.

    Reconciling that contradiction is going to be... interesting. I think the Greens could be persuaded to accept serious reform, but it will have to actually be serious. And if they don't get that, given the fate of the Alliance they are better off pulling the plug and going to the people for a stronger mandate against Labour, rather than betraying their own core supporters.

    The good news is that both Labour and the Greens have an interest in massaging this problem away. I think we may see a refinement of Labour's "review then repeal" policy to "repeal (GCSB powers, but not oversight) then review" to lower the stakes a bit.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1592 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The GCSB Bill: We at least…, in reply to Joshua Arbury,

    The Police have to get a proper warrant from a judge, which can be challenged at trial. GCSB and SIS only need a warrant from the PM, and because its secret it can never be challenged.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1592 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The GCSB Bill: We at least…,

    Also: anyone in wellington up for a quick petition drive in Ohariu to try and get peter Dunne to change his mind? I'm tempted to hitch a train down, but I think we'd need more than one person to get a credible number of signatures in the narrow amount of time available.

    If you're interested, my email is idiotblogid at yahoo (.) co dot uk

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1592 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The GCSB Bill: We at least…,

    Alarmingly, the bill is still silent on the issue of metadata -- for example, the records of phone calls or emails made and received and by whom, rather than the calls or emails themseves. It appears the GCSB can simply do as it wishes there.

    Metadata is very clearly a "communication" in terms of the Act (" signs, signals, impulses, writing, images, sounds, or data that a person or machine produces, sends, receives, processes, or holds in any medium"). But its not a "private communication". So while it may need a warrant ot access, it could also be accessed warrantlessly, and s14 is no protection against mass-collection.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1592 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: It's worse than you think, in reply to Gareth Swain,

    Can someone explain something to me, please?

    I have read over the past few months about some outrageous behaviour by Key and National in general, but also that Key is polling very highly. So, what is it that's keeping him high in the polls? Someone obviously likes him (or National), so what is it they like?

    A total lack of alternatives. Who can we elect in his place? David Shearer?

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1592 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: It's worse than you think, in reply to Sacha,

    They publicly lied that his behaviour had been deliberate when we now know they had (undisclosed) access to evidence that it wasn't. Not remotely OK.

    Or, to put it another way: they defamed him. Though I'm sure they have legal protection for that, even when they do it knowingly and with malice as in this case.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1592 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Real Threat, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    And BTW NZDF can't call in a drone strike.

    Unless they get their allies to do it for them.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1592 posts Report Reply

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