Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Circumstance and coincidence

206 Responses

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  • Russell Brown, in reply to Sacha,

    To be fair, it's your spat with Pete that's swamping the conversation at the moment ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22756 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    and I'm over it already

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19688 posts Report Reply

  • Pete George, in reply to Russell Brown,

    The closer you look, the more implausible Key’s claim to have not heard of Dotcom until the day before the raid looks.

    I agree. It's possible Key wasn't aware of Dotcom until the raid as he claims, but evidence proving otherwise hasn't been produced - and I'm sure a number of people have tried hard to find it as evidence of this is regarded as more than a smoking gun, it would potentially be a bullet for Key's Prime Ministership.

    As Paul Buchanan has suggested it seems likely US intelligence agencies may have had an interest in Dotcom before he came to New Zealand, and it would surprise me if the GCSB didn't have a pre-extradition interest in him too. They should have had an interest.

    But we don't know what if anything of this might have been shared directly with our Prime Minister.

    I think it's plausible Key had no involvement at all in the events leading up to the Dotcom raid. It could have been because it was seen by others as an operational matter that shouldn't concern Government, even possibly mustn't involve Government.

    Or there could have been a deliberate distance.

    Dunedin • Since Dec 2011 • 139 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    If only we knew who had files stored at MegaUpload...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7892 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    If only we knew who had files stored at MegaUpload…

    Simon Grigg. Just sayin'.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22756 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Pete George,

    I think it’s plausible Key had no involvement at all in the events leading up to the Dotcom raid. It could have been because it was seen by others as an operational matter that shouldn’t concern Government, even possibly mustn’t involve Government.

    Or there could have been a deliberate distance.

    I think it's entirely possible that Key lied about it at the time and is simply stuck with the lie.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22756 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Pete George,

    and it would surprise me if the GCSB didn’t have a pre-extradition interest in him too. They should have had an interest.

    And Key should have an interest because oh...y'know, he's the friggin head of said GCSB! It was his "operational matter". or as RB asks, What the hell does he do with his time? The guy conveniently is never around, cant remember, or outright lies. He is not doing his job yet. He's got 37 staff just to remind him to what? Wipe his bum?

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Simon Grigg. Just sayin’

    True.
    But is he a vengeful monolith?

    I mean, I've heard all the rumours...
    and I even read all the ©opyright Thread!
    </joke>

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7892 posts Report Reply

  • Alex Coleman, in reply to Pete George,

    but evidence proving otherwise hasn't been produced

    Evidence for people's states of mind is remarkably hard to find though. All you have to go on is circumstances and likelihoods. How plausible is it that person Y wouldn't be aware of Z given A,B,C...X.

    And again, this isn't a court where proof beyond reasonable doubt applies. This is about whether or not it's resonable to think the PM has lied about intelligence matters for which he is repsonsible for. It's up to him to convince he should be trusted.

    The theories are that he did lie, (this is appraently a conspiracy theory on par with trutherism, according to the PM and his backers), or that he told the truth and he didn't know anything about DotCom even though there was an awful lot of stuff happening all around him for months on end.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 247 posts Report Reply

  • Pete George, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I think it’s entirely possible that Key lied about it at the time and is simply stuck with the lie.

    That's one of the most likely explanations, to some degree. He may have fibbed thinking he could get away with it and under scrutiny it has grown into a lie. Key appeared to be trying to soften his staunch denials recently.

    It seems that unless Dotcom provides proof, or Banks reveals something in court, Key will try to keep weathering the storm.

    I just don't think it's as simple as Key bad and guilty, Dotcom good and innocent.

    Dunedin • Since Dec 2011 • 139 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Geddis, in reply to Pete George,

    I just don’t think it’s as simple as Key bad and guilty, Dotcom good and innocent.

    How is Dotcom's "goodness" or "badness" relevant to the present discussion? Let's say, purely for the purposes of argument, that Dotcom is a crooked copyright thief who made his fortune out of illegal activities. So what?

    The questions here are (i) what was John Key's knowledge of/involvement in the (as we now know, illegal) surveillance of Dotcom; and (ii) has he lied to Parliament and the public about this? There's no need to have any view of Dotcom whatsoever in order to examine these matters and draw conclusions based on the evidence that is available at the time. So you seem to be trying to create extra shades of greyness for no apparent purpose.

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2007 • 200 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Hilary Stace,

    And then there was Corngate.

    Not his best moment either as a journalist or as an interviewer. But since then he's become much better at both.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4451 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock, in reply to Alex Coleman,

    The theories are that he did lie, (this is appraently a conspiracy theory on par with trutherism, according to the PM and his backers), or that he told the truth and he didn’t know anything about DotCom even though there was an awful lot of stuff happening all around him for months on end.

    Which also raises question about his competence, as Russell and other have alluded to. Did he lie, yes or no? If no, given how much was going on under his nose in his baliwick on his watch, is he actually competent for the role he occupies?

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2728 posts Report Reply

  • Alex Coleman, in reply to Rich Lock,

    Which also raises question about his competence

    I've seen this called 'Reagan's dilemma' before, in reference to Iran/Contra and the President's lack of any knowledge regarding what was swirling around him.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 247 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    If only we knew who had files stored at MegaUpload…

    The World Health Organisation?. Now I get it, that 1995 report debunking the effects Environmental Tobacco Smoke, similar to this one. Can’t find the WHO one cos they took Megga down eh.?.
    I gave up smoking, I also gave up freedom.

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    I don't think the USA needs a "special" reason to go after Dotcom, as suggested by Paul and Peter. The excessive zeal with which they have proved willing to hound alleged copyright offenders is well documented. RIP Aaron Awartz.

    The current regime has its roots in Bill Clinton's administration who decided tat America's future was not in making stuff but in protecting ideas. This has turned out to be an economic falsity but US corporates are now so wedded to the model of extreme IP protection that much of the apparatus of the state (including the NSA and 5 Eyes) is designed to enforce that regime.

    And that is also why Joe Biden is so strongly identified with current idiocies.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1645 posts Report Reply

  • Pete George, in reply to Andrew Geddis,

    How is Dotcom’s “goodness” or “badness” relevant to the present discussion? Let’s say, purely for the purposes of argument, that Dotcom is a crooked copyright thief who made his fortune out of illegal activities. So what?

    Because Dotcom is the person disputing Key's story. He has an open interest in damaging Key and ousting him as Prime Minister. I'm as skeptical about his claims as I am of Key's. I think Dotcom's character is a pertinent issue.

    Dunedin • Since Dec 2011 • 139 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to Alex Coleman,

    ‘Reagan’s dilemma’

    Like I said earlier, if you have the attention span of a mosquito..... also applies to memory retention.
    Key has done this sort of thing before...
    "That was my recollection at the time, but time changes. Just not for those on the opposition benches...."
    "If the member had listened to what I actually said he would know that wasn't correct, but that's the sort of thing we expect from the loony left...."
    And so on...
    Its all just word play to the likes of Key because what YOU think is of no consequence to those with the power.

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Handy linked list of Key's previous lies about GCSB. Such character.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19688 posts Report Reply

  • Angela Hart, in reply to Sofie Bribiesca,

    Oh ok I've just always despised the weasel and his proven to be weasely ways. The Party he is in and the systematic stripping of our Countries assets,our people's rights and general discrimination of the less fortunate in NZ. Plus, I just don't like him.

    Hear, hear. Weasels are a pest inNew Zealand and should be treated accordingly.

    Christchurch • Since Apr 2014 • 614 posts Report Reply

  • Angela Hart, in reply to Sacha,

    Handy linked list of Key's previous lies about GCSB. Such character.

    Yes indeed, it's quite a list.

    Christchurch • Since Apr 2014 • 614 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Geddis, in reply to Pete George,

    Because Dotcom is the person disputing Key’s story. He has an open interest in damaging Key and ousting him as Prime Minister.

    So basing our assessment of what has happened entirely on Dotcom's claims about what he says Banks says he told Key would be very silly. Accepted. But that's an incredibly minor point in the narrative thread, and has nothing at all to do with Campbell's story. So derailing things by asking "is Dotcom a good guy or not?" really does nothing to further discussion.

    FWIIW, I wouldn't believe a thing that comes out of Dotcom's mouth, unless there were some form of corroboration available. But equally, I think Key's track record for telling the truth in this area means he isn't entitled to much credibility, either. Meaning that we're left with circumstantial evidence as to who was meeting whom when and where, and what can we reasonable assume from such meetings.

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2007 • 200 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Andrew Geddis,

    FWIIW, I wouldn’t believe a thing that comes out of Dotcom’s mouth, unless there were some form of corroboration available.

    I believe the 2 cheque scenario was requested by Banks. Dotcom gains (and gained) nothing by splitting the $50,000.00. Banks benefitted and was the one who was initially able to say it was anon.
    Often you'll see , when "friends" or supposed friends cross one or another, the truth start flying around for all to hear. Dotcom was belittled by Banks distancing himself and that would have raised Dotcom's blood pressure immediately. Pay backs are a bitch.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    Attachment

    Networking with like minds.
    The eyes have it...

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • William Leander, in reply to Pete George,

    So we have a report saying that:

    Mr Key said he had "no idea what John Banks said to Kim Dotcom but all I know is he has never spoken to me about going to fireworks."

    And Pete George said that these would have been possible conversations between Banks and Key:

    Banks: Do you want to come to Dotcom's fireworks display?"
    Key: "Nah, I'll be in Hawaii".
    Banks to Dotcom: "Our friend John can't make it".

    It could have been:
    Banks: "Would your family be interested in fireworks at New Year?"
    Key: "Nah, we'll be in Hawaii".
    Banks to Dotcom: "I mentioned fireworks but he'll be out of the country".

    Do you realise, Mr George, that if these hypothetical conservations were true, then Key would have been lying when he said that "all I know is he (Banks) has never spoken to me about going to fireworks."?

    Since Apr 2014 • 9 posts Report Reply

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