Friday, May 30, 2014

Statute or its bullshit

Last year, Peter Dunne betrayed us all by agreeing to support John Key's spy bill. His vote was crucial in ensuring the bills passage - he was the government's majority in the second and third readings. His excuse was that Key had promised him that the definition of "private communication" - a crucial term in the bill, which apparently allowed the GCSB to spy on our metadata without any regulation or oversight - would be reviewed to ensure consistency and to ensure that metadata could not be captured.

But it turns out that Key lied: there will be no review. And thanks to that lie, we have a bill which enables NSA-style mass domestic spying.

The lesson should be obvious: do not accept such promises from Key (or any other politician) in future. Instead, demand that concessions are enacted in legislation immediately - and if they require policy work, then delay the legislation until that work is done. Statute or its bullshit. Its that simple.