Hard News by Russell Brown

Read Post

Hard News: Vision and dumbassery

532 Responses

First ←Older Page 1 4 5 6 7 8 22 Newer→ Last

  • Nick Shand,

    I choose not to ignore Edward Snowden's awe inspiring strength of moral character when deliberating over the quality of the whistle blowing evidence he uses to support his plea. Furthermore the plea is altruistic in nature. Last night he asked kiwis to seek out stronger democratic processes to protect our human rights to privacy and freedom of association with regards to internet communications. I hope the evidence supplied breaches a threshold of suspicion for a vast majority of New Zealand voters, so that no matter who is elected, the value of mass meta data collection is openly debated and voted upon.

    auck • Since Aug 2008 • 79 posts Report

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Sacha,

    metadata spying, we’re told).

    We are not told. That's the point. The TPPA is scary enough with what is sneaking out. Therefore I'm pleased people like Snowden in the job that have to live in solitude in Russia, gave up his life to help the world because what he saw felt dirty. I've got a little time for him. Nuff respec'

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report

  • Sacha, in reply to nzlemming,

    You can't filter what's not there.

    I agree. But it doesn't prove how it got there.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

  • stephen clover, in reply to AndrewH,

    By all means discuss it -- I'm not trying to shut you down -- I just think that other older existing thread would be a better place. That way them who need or want to not read that can avoid it.


    actually affects two women whose day in court has been denied.

    Yes. Those poor women, having this drag on like this. I really wonder if Swedish law allows for him to be tried in absentia. Or, after last night -- why not a bloody video link-up!

    [ PS @Russell I think I have just found a bug in the commenting feature, if you're interested I can post deets / steps to replicate etc. ]

    wgtn • Since Sep 2007 • 355 posts Report

  • Sacha,

    Snowden impressed me last night by several orders of magnitude more than the others. Brilliant communicator, clear moral core. Whereas Assange bored me away from watching.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

  • Sacha, in reply to stephen clover,

    I just think that other older existing thread would be a better place


    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Sacha,

    I agree. But it doesn’t prove how it got there.

    Follow the money/power ( this case 5i's)

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report

  • Ian Dalziel,

    CAFCA's pre-election information-to-vote-with talk, that Murray Horton took nationwide, is now available to watch here

    Who's Running The Show & In Whose Interests?
    A video of the CAFCA (Campaign Against Foreign Control – Aotearoa) pre-election tour presentation.

    It is Time to Put People back at the centre of the Economy

    People's Rights before Corporate Profit
    Public Service Not Private Profit
    An Independent Foreign Policy
    No Unjust Secret Treaties

    These guys have been at this for nigh on 40 years, Murray knows of what he speaks... people are finally catching up, lets go for 'critical mass' - share the link.

    <I have to declare that I do make hopefully persuasive collage pictures for them and have for some decades>

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7953 posts Report

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to AndrewH,

    OTOH, if those are the ground rules, then I suggest Craig avoids rocking that particular snark.

    OK, Andrew, I’ll give you this much: Paranoia is a mental illness, and I shouldn’t throw around a clinical label in a abelist manner because that shit isn’t cool. Full stop and period. I don’t actually know whether Assange is paranoid, but it simply beggars belief that he’s unaware of the nature of extradition law and how the Swedish legal system works for everyone. It’s really not that hard to do the homework.

    And as Russell said in the OP, it was disturbing to see Laila Harré ” repeatedly gave the crowd the impression that Assange is ensconced in the Ecuadorian embassy because a US prosecutor wants to get at him, rather than because he refuses to return to Sweden for questioning over two alleged sex offences.” I get that plenty of people around here consider that a “distraction” from “real issues”, but I’d actually like someone who could be leading a party in the next Parliament to think a LOT harder before minimizing rape when the alleged abuser is a political ally.

    One other thing: Yes, Sofie, Assange is entitled to the presumption of innocence until proven guilty in a court of law. But the women he allegedly raped have rights too, just as Tania Billingsley had the right NOT to be turned into a grotesque political football.

    It’s interesting, Andrew, that you’ve totally ignored my point that the Swedish government can’t give him any “assurance” that the United States wouldn’t seek to extradite him (in which case he has the same legal protections and right to due process as anyone else); and that they can’t move the investigation to Assange’s current Kensington digs either because there's a warrant out for his arrest that can't be executed.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report

  • Rochelle, in reply to tussock,

    You are so correct.. and notice it is the Left who are the first to be targeted.

    This has been so since long before the Russian Revolution.
    Just that the technology is so much greater now..

    In 1960 my partner and I wanted to visit his mother who lived in New York. He had a German passport and was concerned he might not be allowed re-entry to Britain, so I applied for a USA Visa.
    I received this in short order, but on every page it was stamped with CANCELLED..

    We had been active in such Left movements as Anti-apartheid. CND, The Peace Movement etc. They knew.

    If you read Muriel Newman's NZCPR-Weekly blog [I'm sorry I have not given the Link], you will find the most vitriolic expressions of hate for the Left and, especially, the Greens, in the comments to the weekly questions.

    These are the enemies who are surveilled .. along with the genuine terrorist suspects.

    Kapiti • Since Feb 2011 • 9 posts Report

  • Dave Marks, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I can’t see where cable tapping comes into this, who raised it first?

    Russell wrote:

    There’s other evidence than Snowden’s claim for saying that X-Keyscore is shared with the GCSB.

    I don’t think that the NSA would need to have people in NZ tapping undersea cables, because NZ’s cable connections only connect with Australia and Hawaii. source: www.submarinecablemap.com. The information that’s going through these cables would be available at the other ends (both also in 5Eyes). Australia and Hawaii connect to other parts of the world, so if, as Snowden said last night, NSA have staff and premises based in NZ, and if we assume they are involved with managing information that goes through these cables it would be overkill. (NSA operations in AU and Hawaii would also capture traffic with other countries, not just NZ.) I just don’t understand why they need to bother tapping cables within NZ territory.

    <tin foil hat>
    If NSA were intercepting traffic within NZ and sending it back to Utah or wherever for X-KEYSCORE that would be a different matter. Obviously it would be illegal for GCSB to be involved with this, but if NSA had some of their people stationed here to do the dirty work then job done. No cable tapping required if Southern Cross or whoever sell them a nice fast data connection.
    </tin foil hat>

    It’s all speculation, but so far Snowden has been reliable and he did talk about NSA people being based here in the context of X-KEYSCORE information on NZ originated traffic.

    Waterview • Since Nov 2012 • 3 posts Report

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    But the women he allegedly raped have rights too, just as Tania Billingsley had the right NOT to be turned into a grotesque political football.

    Yep that's why we fight on and that's real. Life doesn't stop at the hiccups on the way. If someone complains, it is the Governments duty to make sure we are ok. What's not ok ? Well you have seen the campaign which is good. None of that shit is ok but it's still life in many facets of communication. It's difficult albeit not disrepectful to keep being in life even when some get it shit. I understand you have all right to feel your way, no buts

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report

  • Jack Harrison, in reply to Rochelle,

    The secret destabilising of organisations deemed to be "too far" left, and a risk to the security of the state is incredible. It's the missing voice in our democracy.

    Yet ACT, a far-right millionaires fantasy party could be passing law again soon. Centre is skewed.

    wellington • Since Aug 2014 • 296 posts Report

  • simon g,

    Anybody wondering why Mike Hosking is so obnoxious about Snowden on Seven Sharp - and way out of line with most journalists, not just the predictable pinkoes - should bear in mind that the Great Broadcaster had mind his mind up a very long time ago:


    So it's not simply about a "right wing bias", it's really about a stroked ego not wanting to accept, even for a moment, that he might have got it wrong.

    Ladies and gentlemen, your host for tomorrow night's debate, on our national channel ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1333 posts Report

  • Seriatim, in reply to Sacha,

    Now I'm confused … I thought XKEYSCORE was the insidious set-up that recorded everybody's every single keystroke … ? Nerd to rescue please.

    Wellington • Since Dec 2010 • 57 posts Report

  • Sacha, in reply to Seriatim,

    There's a whole system of different components. Was written about here many moons ago. We need a bigger nerd. :)

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

  • mark taslov, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    the Ecuadorian embassy because a US prosecutor wants to get at him, rather than because he refuses to return to Sweden

    I’d be wary of softening or simplifying the politics involved here, he hasn’t merely refused to return to Sweden, he’s refused to return to British legal jurisdiction in the sense of stepping out of the embassy. There is every likelihood that 2-4 years in the Swedish prison system would be similar if not preferable, he’s already served 2 (though not for that crime). If that was all there was to this. If it were not so much more complex than that. Given the conflicted ethics and blurring of boundaries, other motives here are not entirely incomprehendable.

    Laila Harre could have given Assange’s full bio, but to what end? Was there a comprehensive list of the charges against Snowden? Kim DotCom? We could spend all day on this. For my part watching the feed intermittently on Youtube – ∞ absolutely disgusting bigoted and misogynist bile:

    "type 69 if you’d fuck Mona"

    I mean WTF is that?! I was so appalled that I found myself rabidly transcribing phrases from the speakers just to minimise the space being taken up by filth – until they turned off comments, well into Snowden. In what was an otherwise excellent internet experience this was a massive oversight..

    This time and effort put into reiterating that Assange is an alleged rapist – we know the score, he is – could arguably be better focused on actively and tangibly fighting rape culture and misogyny in our own communities. I support all discourse in and around this issue.

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report

  • B Jones,

    Those of you paying attention might recall that that Malaysian diplomat is getting extradited to NZ to face charges; he's not getting interviewed in the comfort of his own home. Nai Yin Xue, who left his wife in the boot of his car and his daughter at a Sydney train station - he got extradited from the US and tried here. Sexual assault is sexual assault, whether it's supposed to have been done by the world's greatest freedom fighter, or some ordinary shmoe, and there's no reason Assange's case shouldn't be considered by the Swedish criminal justice system like any other accused person. The way his defenders carry on you'd think he's a sporting hero or filmmaker.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 976 posts Report

  • AndrewH, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    I get your point re: assurance, and I agree - they can't. But I distrust the Swedish prosecutors motives as much as you trust the Assange teams ones. The current stand-off is a situation that could've been avoided at different stages by both sides, but wasn't. Now it's at the point where it's hard to see any way that justice can be served in any manner. To run the argument that Assange should head to Sweden to face the music is pretty much as realistic as saying Snowden should pop home for a chat with the prosecutors there - lovely concept, completely impractical.

    If I were Assange, then guilty or innocent, there's no way I'd get on a plane back to Sweden right now. He's pissed off way too many powerful people, and they intend to get him one way or another. I don't see that as a paranoid view, just an accurate reading of reality. But that also makes it nigh on impossible to guarantee either a fair trial or safe passage (and from it, if cleared). THIS is another of the prices we pay for a fucked-up utu-based system.
    If the surveillence debate underlines one thing yet again, it's Helen Clarke's warning at the outset of the Iraq war on how we were moving from an international system based on the rule of law to the rule of the jungle.
    Since under Bush/Obama/Key virtually no-one in authority is being held accountable for anything meaningful, illegal surveilling has joined the list of rendering/kidnapping, drone-executing, financial conspiracy and whatever else that will never be prosecuted. Key is in the unusual position as a politician he actually has something to lose from this, but even if he were to lose the election off the back of it, his cash and connections will make it a very soft fall. There's no real prospect or mechanism that I'm aware of for him to face real, meaningful charges if he lied to the country, passed legislation under urgency to willingly undermine the democracy etc. There's an asymmetry to treason charges that means they're never levelled at those that really deserve them.
    If he has lied as I think looks likely, that's treason in my mind. From the journo's outlook you'd think it was a speeding ticket he was being accused of.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2008 • 33 posts Report

  • Rich Lock, in reply to Danielle,

    “I’m pretty certain that innocent people had or have nothing to worry about.”

    People trotting this line out and BELIEVING IT – that absolutely boggles the mind.

    My jaw dropped open slightly when I read it, too. Jake's either a far more subtle troll than we've given him credit for thus far, or is taking naïveté to Olympic levels.

    Jake - power does everything it can to accumulate more power to itself. That's just it's nature. That's why over hundreds of years we've built up legal systems that gradually accumulate rights of citizens rights in relation to the power of the state, and devolve that power from tribal chiefs, kings, and their henchmen - from their word being absolute, to ordinary citizens also having a voice. Because power is never given away, it has to be taken. The fact that power is always conceded reluctantly is why it took hundreds of years to get where we are now - rights to vote, rights to association, rights to freely travel. And a right to privacy.

    Cardinal Richelieu said: 'If you give me six lines written by the hand of the most honest of men, I will find something in them which will hang him.' You should look him up sometime - he knew a lot about state surveillance, reigns of terror and consolidation of power within a totalitarian regime.

    We don't have to give six written lines - they've already taken everything we've ever done. Think about that.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2728 posts Report

  • mark taslov, in reply to B Jones,

    He’s not getting interviewed in the comfort of his own home

    As far as I’m aware, that’s not what the US prosecutions of DotCom or Edward Snowden are gunning for either. With a line up like last night’s, tuning in or attending an event bought by a convicted criminal fighting extradition charges. However your point needs to be made, and reiterated until the cycle of exploitation and dehumanisation is quashed.

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report

  • Sacha, in reply to Rich Lock,



    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

  • oga, in reply to Sacha,

    This all brings to mind the works of a master propagandist who was instrumental in getting the National party into power. It was for the National Socialist... oh.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 47 posts Report

  • WH,

    While I recognise that these issues have been raised in the run-up to the election for a reason, the list of questions about the conduct of Key's government is starting to look pretty troubling. How do you lose your Minister of Justice to a major ethics scandal and have your honesty and integrity directly challenged by international experts on a matter that would require your resignation if proven within four weeks?

    I think I have more confidence in the perspicacity of Snowden and Greenwald (who were each very impressive) than I do in the New Zealand media establishment (particularly the abomination that is the New Zealand Herald's political reporting). New Zealanders' favourable views of John Key may save National yet.

    But how is it that a US journalist can speak more intelligently about our political landscape than our own media personalities? At the end of the day, Patrick Gower is still on TV and it does not appear to be satire.


    Since Nov 2006 • 797 posts Report

  • Sacha, in reply to Rich Lock,

    That's why over hundreds of years we've built up legal systems that gradually accumulate rights of citizens rights in relation to the power of the state

    Thousands of years if we change 'state' to society.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

First ←Older Page 1 4 5 6 7 8 22 Newer→ Last

Post your response…

This topic is closed.