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Thursday, March 22, 2012

Fishing Expeditions

Due for the final reading today in parliament is the odious Search and Surveillance Bill. It's a wish list for the NZ Police and other government agencies, a serious erosion of civil liberties, and runs as part of an authoritarian stream of bills. Mr Bradbury has also commented extensively on this subject.

Listening yesterday to the committee stage I heard nothing to allay any fears since the bill was introduced in 2009. The dumping by the Minister (Judith Collins) of a massive supplimentary order paper with little time to digest and respond to it is a shabby way to make amendments, but is all too typical of how parties operate when in government. Considering how long the bill has been around you have to impute a malign intent when there is last minute rushes this way.

At this stage I don't know what's in (or out of) the bill - will have to listen in if it goes through tonight. The 'fishing expedition' parts allowing the cops to commence surveillence without a warrant are the most dangerous - I hope this has been dropped.

The bill's contents and SOP are online.


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