NZ - now one nation under CCTV (10 reasons to hate new Search & Surveillance Bill)
We are a nation of sleepy hobbits easily manipulated by Shire Volk into handing over vast unchecked powers to the State. With the passing of the draconian Search and Surveillance Bill last week, a little part of progressive NZ died as the Police managed to get a wet dream wish list of spying powers through without any real safe guards whatsoever. Effectively we've just handed the eye of Mordor over to the state.
This isn't a left wing or right wing issue, this is about freedom from an all pervasive state. It is about the very values of a progressive democracy, and to allow the State such powers with no judicial over sight and no checks and balances is more proof that we are sliding further and further into Authoritarian Capitalism with every passing week. The saddest thing is that we all just let John Key do it.
The irony here is that NZers are the first to rear up on their hind legs and bleat 'NANNY STATE' when a Government attempts to remove the legal loop hole that allows abusive parents to get away with bashing their kids, yet not a whimper from them when the State allows 70 agencies the ability to break into our homes and spy on us with all of the 'authority' of a fucking Justice of the Peace.
This is Nanny State on meth. We are becoming a functional police state, not a liberal democracy.
This legislation represents the largest erosion of civil liberties since the 1951 lockout, we should all be deeply ashamed at the way we've allowed our rights to simply be taken from us in this manner. The blood we've spilt on foreign beaches defending our democracy and freedom has been squandered and wasted. Why bother paying such a steep price for freedom and democracy when we so willingly hand its fruits over without a word?
We deserve contempt for this. For the slower members of the herd, here are the 10 reasons we should never have accepted the Search and Surveillance Bill.
1: These spying powers are not just for the police - they can be extended to 70 other Government agencies. Why the hell should the Pork Board be allowed to break into your home and plant spy cameras?
2: The so called safe guards for the other Government agencies is that to use these powers will require the signature of the Minister. Seeing as John Key signed off on the new BMW's 4 separate times and claimed he still had no idea what he had agreed to, a Minister's signature as a safe guard is as flimsy as an umbrella is at protecting you from tsunamis.
3: The ONLY submission received in support of these dizzying new powers was from the Police, EVERY OTHER SUBMISSION was against it. How can we formulate public policy as sensitive as the power to spy on one another when the only support is from the ones gaining these new powers?
4: NZers have lost their right to silence, the Police can force you to answer questions on mere suspicion of you committing a crime now.
5: NZers now have to hand over any information to the Police not if they prove you are guilty of anything, but based on suspicion and if you refuse to provide this information, you can be jailed for 12 months.
6: The Police no longer have to get a search warrant based on evidence to spy on you, they only have to get a surveillance device warrant which can be obtained by any officer of any of the 70 Government agencies who can now ask for it based on no evidence at all, just their 'suspicion' that you might be involved in a crime. This surveillance device warrant can be obtained from just a bloody JP.
7: The Police and 70 other state agencies won't even need a warrant of any kind once you are arrested if they think further evidence is at another address. So you could be arrested on suspicion, and your car, workplace, friends homes etc etc can be searched without any warrant.
8: The powers are sold as being used against 'organized crime' but the definition by the Police of 'organized crime' is 3 people who know each other.
9: Even if the agency doesn't find what they are looking for as outlined in their suspicions, any evidence they do find can still be used. This means the spying is pure fishing expedition, the 'suspicion' used to obtain the spying warrant doesn't even need to match what they find.
10: These NZ spying powers by every Government agency go well beyond anything in Europe, Canada, Australia or even the US.
I've watched the progress of this Bill from the very start and with hand on heart would have sworn there was no way this would have advanced as far as it has. I thought the fiasco of the so called Urewera terrorism trial would have put a screaming halt to these new spying powers. To my genuine shock it was used to ram through retrospective legislation legalizing illegal Police spying tactics.
I honestly don't think most NZers have any idea what they've given away and that if there had been a real attempt to educate NZers of the ramifications of just allowing these powers to be available to 70 agencies then there is no way it would have passed.
This abomination that erodes so many of our civil rights should never have been allowed to pass. The history books will be far more damning of our collective apathy on this than the current entertainment driven media are.
Sleepy hobbits reap what they sow.