Wednesday, August 21, 2013


The Privileges Committee inquiry into the Henry inquiry's abuse of power while inquiring into the leaking of the Kitteridge inquiry got under way today. Naturally, everyone is pointing the finger at everyone else. Still, we've learned a few things:

  • Ministers don't like having their emails rummaged through without being asked, even when there is suspicion. Naturally, they're all going to vote for the GCSB bill this afternoon, which will allow suspicionless trawls of everything. And then they'll wonder why the public regards them as hypocrites.
  • Henry didn't care about what legal powers he had, leaving it to the recipients of his requests to worry about. Which could explain why Parliament had to hold a select committee inquiry into "Powers and Operations of the IRD" after his departure.
  • DPMC head Andrew Kibblewhite has no respect for journalistic privilege, and thinks he should be allowed to trawl through their emails and phone calls for his convenience. Note that he has a significant oversight role over the NZ intelligence community.
  • The inquiry was "driven" by Kibblewhite and GCSB director Ian Fletcher. Oddly, the latter hasn't been called to give his version of events. I guess being childhood friends with the PM has its perks.
  • Contrary to Key's previous assertion, David Henry probably won't be considered for any more government jobs.
Its great to see the Privileges Committee taking the privacy of MP's and journalist's communications seriously. But wouldn't it be nice if those same MPs cared as much about our privacy as they care about their own?