Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Scuffling and screaming on The Left

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  • Heather Gaye,

    Boo to the far left, and its mirror image on the right.

    I think the extremes in society do some important work in helping the moderate majority dwell in a fair&reasonable political climate; the centre of the bell curve is defined as much by the vocal fringes as by the general public.

    For that reason I'm quite fine with the loony left and rabid right jumping on whatever political bandwagon they want. Voicing extreme views for which the moderate majority may hold qualified sympathy serves to edge society ever-so-slightly toward the perfect fit. Voicing wholly objectionable views does exactly the same thing, in the opposite direction (ref: enough is enough).

    What I'm not happy about is the idea that we might now have a law that can be used to quash the fringe with threats of terrorism charges. Of course I condemn any kind of violent uprising, but it's anathema to me that an individual who is deemed unsavoury because of their firm & passionate beliefs (and a habit of speaking them, loudly) might have fewer rights than an individual who has cruelly & selfishly violated the basic rights of others.

    I'm also extremely unhappy about the fact that I hadn't even heard of the Terrorism Suppression Act until a bunch of activists got thrown in jail. I'm not sure if it's my fault for walking around with my fingers in my ears, or it's the crappy MSM's fault for being more frenzied about parliamentary fistfights than any long-range-but-dull-sounding bills that're getting passed. What the hell else have I missed?

    Morningside • Since Nov 2006 • 533 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Oh, in response to those racist comments, which are a clear violation of posting policy, I should also mention that Aotearoa Indymedia has been struggling to moderate properly, as two of the three active admins are currently in custody, and the other is very busy trying to sort out things related to their arrest. See Aotearoa Indymedia needs your help

    I'd noticed that. I genuinely appreciate what Asher's done with Fight Dem Back and I don't envy him at the moment, trying to keep Indymedia on an even keel.

    But look below the anti-Asian post -- there's a guy cheering on the throwing of a pipe bomb into Brown's Bay police station last night, in pursuit of the "revolution" he seems to think the rest of New Zealand is going to embrace. I'm afraid that really gives me the shits.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22849 posts Report Reply

  • kmont,

    I'm also extremely unhappy about the fact that I hadn't even heard of the Terrorism Suppression Act until a bunch of activists got thrown in jail. I'm not sure if it's my fault for walking around with my fingers in my ears, or it's the crappy MSM's fault for being more frenzied about parliamentary fistfights than any long-range-but-dull-sounding bills that're getting passed. What the hell else have I missed?

    Ditto.
    I don't want the PM to have the power to designate an individual or a group as terrorists.

    wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 485 posts Report Reply

  • 3410,

    Politics is not just about developing our own vision of how the world should be, its about how we organise ourselves in light of the fact that we all see the world differently. The "system" is not a monolithic structure that was set up to oppress the masses, its a constantly renegotiated compromise of incompatible forces and desires.

    Politics is only one aspect of "the system".

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Fitzgerald,

    Russell - a pipe bomb was thrown at a Police Station?

    Since May 2007 • 631 posts Report Reply

  • Gervais Laird,

    <<" Police station damaged by pipe bomb
    6/11/2007 10:56:02


    A pipe bomb was thrown into the Browns Bay Police Station on Auckland's North Shore overnight.


    The bomb exploded, causing broken windows and shrapnel damage. Repairs are expected to cost several thousand dollars and the public counter area will be closed for the next few days. North Shore Area Commander Les Paterson says it is fortunate the building did not catch fire.">>

    Who's to say if it was the looney left or some bored East Coast Bays kids letting loose on Guy Fawkes with a larger than normal "banger". Throwing bottles at cops and destroying police property in the Bays was going on as far back as the early to mid 80s when I went to school up there by bored kids. It's pretty pointless leaping to conclusions about this incident, as it is prejudging the police actions in the last couple of weeks until there's a bit more information.

    Sydney • Since Jan 2007 • 14 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Fitzgerald,

    Let me leap if no-one else will -

    All I know about Browns Bay is that it's the "small town" outside of Auckland that Rachel Hunter comes from.

    I'm gonna guess it's not known for Tuhoe radicals?

    Random acts of bloody dangerous violence by middle class kids. I strongly suspect we'll see them on Scarfies next season.

    Since May 2007 • 631 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    I thought Rachel Hunter actually came from Glenfield, several suburbs over. Can someone confirm?

    Browns Bay was (still is?) a boring place with a great view. I speak as someone who grew up in the equally boring and beautifully-viewed Mairangi Bay, a few beaches south...

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report Reply

  • Gervais Laird,

    Close - Browns Bay is an affluent middle class suberb on North Shore. There's a lot of English ex-pats and Koreans settled there as its not a cheap area to buy into. Not exactly a hot-bed of revolutionary discontentment. The limit of revolutionary fervour in the Bays was voting for Gary Knapp of Social Credit over Don Brash twice in the 80s for some totally incomprehensible fiscal reason. So yeah, there isn't likely to be barricades in the street outside Woolworths Browns Bay in the immediate future

    Sydney • Since Jan 2007 • 14 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Who's to say if it was the looney left or some bored East Coast Bays kids letting loose on Guy Fawkes with a larger than normal "banger".

    Several thousand dollars' shrapnel damage, multiple broken windows and the front counter likely to be out of action for days sounds a bit more than a banger.

    But you're right, no sense jumping to conclusions. It was more the guy applauding the throwing of a bomb I didn't like.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22849 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Fitzgerald,

    Could be right Danielle - I'm working from memory of a TV bio on Rachel where that was stated.

    Since May 2007 • 631 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    All I know about Browns Bay is that it's the "small town" outside of Auckland that Rachel Hunter comes from.

    I'm gonna guess it's not known for Tuhoe radicals?

    Brown's Bay is part of the suburban North Shore and the station keeps gentleman's hours. It's near Takapuna, where the conference took place over the weekend, but that may not mean anything.

    It seems the bomb was stuffed with .22 bullets. Bit more than a kids' prank by the look of it ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22849 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    Browns' Bay? Sounds like the National Front to me.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    Which reminds me, where was the anti-terror hysteria two years ago? I mean the National Front have been committing acts of violence and intimidation, stockpiling explosives and openly boasting of forming a militia and training in the bush.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Fitzgerald,

    That's a sick act.
    I can't see any reason to complain about the cops actions or inactions at the conference let alone a revenge attack.

    Since May 2007 • 631 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Fitzgerald,

    Not that I'm tieing the two together

    Since May 2007 • 631 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    vNot that I'm tieing the two together

    Nah, and we really can't. I just don't like seeing fuckwits celebrating it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22849 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Ditto.
    I don't want the PM to have the power to designate an individual or a group as terrorists.

    Me neither. It's an absolutely retrograde step.

    I/S says the Greens plan on moving some amendments to test the major parties. If anyone can give me a heads-up as to when that might be, I'd be happy to organise something on PA in support.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22849 posts Report Reply

  • kmont,

    I/S says the Greens plan on moving some amendments to test the major parties. If anyone can give me a heads-up as to when that might be, I'd be happy to organise something on PA in support.

    Would you really, that would be great. I am about as political as a teatowel but this pisses me off and I don't know the political process well enough to do anything useful.

    wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 485 posts Report Reply

  • InternationalObserver,

    All I know about Browns Bay is that it's the "small town" outside of Auckland ... I'm gonna guess it's not known for Tuhoe radicals? ...Random acts of bloody dangerous violence by middle class kids.

    Geez those Tuhoe Terrorists are smart. Straight out of the pages of "How To Start A Class War"... dressing up as Shore Boys and blowing up a Police Station. Does anyone know where Tama Iti's kids were that night?

    Since Jun 2007 • 909 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    I thought Rachel Hunter actually came from Glenfield, several suburbs over. Can someone confirm?

    She went to school in Glenfield - the intermediate, so I presume she lived there.

    C'mon, Browns Bay, famous for sightings of Shortie St Stars in cafes, and they did (still do?) the filming there.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Would you really, that would be great. I am about as political as a teatowel but this pisses me off and I don't know the political process well enough to do anything useful.

    Perhaps a few of us could get together and agree some non-hysterical wording and as many readers as wish to can then add their names to it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22849 posts Report Reply

  • kmont,

    Perhaps a few of us could get together and agree some non-hysterical wording and as many readers as wish to can then add their names to it.

    Yes please.

    wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 485 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    I don't want the PM to have the power to designate an individual or a group as terrorists.

    Me neither. It's an absolutely retrograde step.

    I/S says the Greens plan on moving some amendments to test the major parties. If anyone can give me a heads-up as to when that might be, I'd be happy to organise something on PA in support.

    Better hurry Russell, that's today. They're debating the TSAA as we write.

    I'd take slight issue with the characterisation of the TSAA as giving "the PM to have the power to designate an individual or a group as terrorists".

    The PM has that power under the TSA 2002. The PM's designations last for 3 years, and must be confirmed if they are to continue beyond 3 years by the High Court. As proposed to be amended, the bill doesn't change the power to issue a three-year interim designation, it moves the re-designation power from the High Court to the PM.

    So the law is that at the moment is that the PM can designate Greenpeace a terrorist organisation, and three years later, if the PM wants to keep it as such, it goes to court and Greenpeace, if they want, can argue against it. Three years later. There are issues with the TSAA, I'm not sure this is one to write home about. The right of Greenpeace to pursue a judicial review of the PM's decision in the interim remains (with the additional problem that the TSAA will allow the PM to use classified evidence during that judicial review).

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3215 posts Report Reply

  • kmont,

    Thanks for the clarification Graeme. Why isn't this kind of information more widely available?

    Sigh.

    wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 485 posts Report Reply

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