Wednesday, October 24, 2007


The Crimes (Repeal of Seditious Offences) Amendment Bill passed its third reading tonight, 114 - 7, six months to the day after the minor parties held their press conference to demand repeal. The law will come into force on 1 January 2008.

Naturally, I'm pleased. It's not every day you change the law. Though when it came down to it, all I had to do was suggest it to a few people, read a lot of books, and dump the information in the right inboxes. The Law Commission, Keith Locke, and the Maori Party did all the real work. So, thanks to them, to all the MPs who spoke on it, and all the parties who voted for it. And thanks to Tim Selwyn, whose stupidity with an axe ironically provided the impetus for repeal. This doesn't mean I approve of what he did - frankly, I think he was a dick - but such dicks deserve to be punished for the crime they actually did - criminal damage - rather than thoughtcrime. Finally, I think we should remember all those victimised under the law. There's a short list here, but there's at least twice as many I never got round to detailing. Fortunately, there are unlikely to be any more.

Next target: blasphemous libel.