Tricky Dick Redux-Is John Key New Zealand’s Richard M Nixon?
Our fair country has sailed into deeply troubling times fellow travellers. We have drifted from a mediocre experiment in socialism and political correctness into a bewildered Gilead that drifts dangerously toward autocracy.
Roger Donaldson’s first feature film “Sleeping Dogs” was an adaption of C.K Stead’s “Smith’s Dream” (1971).
Both book and film were based on the premise of a New Zealand that was run by a totalitarian and US controlled government. For those who have never seen the film nor read the book, a brief synopsis: NZ is in turmoil. Due to an oil embargo the nation is in an energy crisis which has caused the government to suspend human rights and institute martial law. A resistance movement has formed, however it is overwhelmingly outmatched by government forces and US army mercenary advisers “invited” to assist the government uphold the law. Recent events in reality make for interesting irony considering these fictional laws were passed in secrecy and/or with sweeping disregard for legality or due process. Sound familiar so far?
The story centres on the falling of the shutters off a man named Smith who is just an average New Zealand square. Smith’s marriage collapses when his wife tells him she doesn’t love him anymore and is having an affair. From there his life is thrown into chaos and a chain of events lead him to be suspected of being a driving force in the resistance and accordingly pursued.
Sleeping Dogs was a cautionary tale written during the Vietnam war.It analogously questioned New Zealand’s involvement with the United States Government and NZ;’s consequent support by connection, of rapacious foreign policies. Many New Zealanders have feared or suspected that the US has covert control mechanisms influencing the nation’s leaders since that era, and bearing the events of the last two years in mind, those suspicions begin to take on a sinister reality.
What major politically related events lead us to this conclusion? Under his first term of office, Mr Key appeared to be a strong, very capable leader. He braced Barrack Obama about climate change by practically ambushing him at a world leaders summit when Obama had snubbed a request to meet. Key hosted a Kiwi barbecue for Prince William during his state visit in 2009. He openly disregarded and avoided traditional pomp and ceremony by appearing on the news during said meat roasting with a stubbie of beer in his hand, treating William like an old mate instead of a monarch.
Mr Key had his goofy gaffes too that he somehow turned to his advantage, such as the 2011 Rugby World Cup closing ceremony when he hijacked a handshake in front of world media between All Black captain Richie McCaw and International Rugby Board chairman Bernard Lapasset, creating an extremely awkward three way hand shake. In fact this one earned him third place in BuzzFeed’s 15 most ridiculous world leaders poll. This made us like and trust Key all the more, we could relate to him, he had a black singlet and gumboots way of getting results and the nation was happy to be led by one of our own.
What a dark day, and salient turning point January 20, 2012 was for New Zealand and its government. On this day, armed NZ police famously raided the mansion of a formerly little known eccentric German millionaire in Auckland by the name of Kim Dotcom. Despite the fact Mr Dotcom had NZ residency and had broken no laws here, he was arrested at gunpoint after an overwhelming military style raid, complete with helicopters and tactical personnel with automatic weapons.
If for no other reason, the raid attracted huge media attention because of its unprecedented size and martial tone. The NZ Police arrested Dotcom on behalf of the FBI, who claimed they were applying to extradite Mr Dotcom to the US to face a raft of internet piracy charges. It has always been widely accepted that these charges have been leveled by influential Hollywood moguls because of Dotcom’s Megaupload file sharing site. The legality of this in itself is questionable, but we will stick with NZ, for that is mess enough.
Kim Dotcom turned out to be a fierce and resourceful quarry, he cleverly manipulated media attention of his case and made every effort to be transparent with the New Zealand public whenever he had camera attention. Dotcom created a Robin Hood aura around himself, and that coupled with his gigantic physical stature and bluff, benevolent persona led much of the country to strongly support him. Further to that Dotcom is intelligent, he researched New Zealand law, he found that the government had acted rashly, if not illegally. Moreover Dotcom dug and Dotcom found dirt-lots of it.
Dotcom Mansion is in Coatesville, west of Auckland City, it is the electorate of none other than the county’s leader the Right Honourable John Key. When challenged about the Dotcom raid Mr Key claimed he’d had no knowledge of Dotcom prior to the raid.Despite these claims Dotcom maintains Key was very much aware of his presence in the area. Indeed, had Key been doing his job as local Member he must have known of a flamboyant two metre tall, 130 kilogram eccentric German multi millionaire, Coatesville is, after all, a small place, and Kim’s a big guy in every way.
Key’s deadpan & disingenuous denials and statements such as “I don’t remember that” have become synonymous with the smug visage he presents to the media when he is clearly being false or dishonest. In fact, Mr Key’s clear disrespect for disclosure and honesty has become a major public concern.
Further to Key’s embarrassment over the Dotcom affair, historically high profile buffoon and terminal political blow fly John Banks, managed to roll through the mire over Dotcom as well-several times in fact. When it became evident to Dotcom that Banks had gone stag on him by refusing to help his cause, having formerly pledged his undying support and loyalty to the jolly giant, Dotcom outed him to the media.
The Fourth Estate had a field day; Dotcom claimed Banks had personally been present to receive cheques totaling $50 000NZD signed by Dotcom’s factor, and in his own presence, Banks foolishly denied it. Said cheques were donated anonymously towards Bank’s campaign for Mayor of the Auckland Super City (it failed), and the evidence was clear that the transactions did indeed take place. The fiasco went on for weeks, but ultimately, like so many political scandals in this country, it went away, overshadowed by the next comedy.
The ongoing Dotcom legal proceedings have become farcical, with senior members of NZ’s judiciary openly questioning the Police about refusal to disclose evidence and ruling if not against, then in the interests of obfuscating the bullying attempts of the US Federal to haul Dotcom back to Dodge for a kangaroo court hearing and subsequent public lynching. The case against Dotcom weakens with every appearance, as does the credibility of our administration’s involvement.
The fact in itself that the FBI’s involvement is so openly accepted is appalling, for when did New Zealand’s legal system become muscle for overseas goon squads enforcing the wishes of their Hollywood capos?
Sadly the Dotcom incident was one of several notable occasions where New Zealand Law has been openly ignored or over ridden by the National government. The Dotcom fiasco however, ultimately revealed far more disturbing news than merely that of the state persecuting foreign residents. What fell out of the Dotcom affair was the revelation that the Government Security Communications Bureau (GCSB) had spied on Dotcom on behalf of the police. Under NZ law it is illegal for the government’s spy agency[s] to surveil New Zealanders. Upon the discovery that the GCSB had spied on Dotcom it was further revealed that they had also violated the rights of up to 80 other NZ citizens in a similar fashion.
True to form, John Key is currently bogged down trying to pass a heinous piece of human rights abrogating legislation to allow the GCSB to continue spying on the country’s citizens. The bill has been criticised vehemently by leading legal experts, civil rights advocates, and in fact the government’s independent, but state funded Human Right Commission. Only yesterday did it come to light how dimly and arrogantly Key regarded their report about his government’s intentions.
In light of the current revelations about US agencies spying on the worldwide population, it is even more chilling that Key is in such haste to ram this bill through. It appears as if he is thumbing his nose at the outrage the rest of the world is expressing in reaction to these scandals and instead showing support for what has been globally reviled and condemned. Is this perhaps how Key envisages NZ returning to the place it once [allegedly] occupied under the Eagle’s warm but morally redundant wing?
Equally sweeping but less publicly known is the legislation passed which denies citizens from challenging the government in court. This was passed in reaction the the Human Rights Review Tribunal challenge made by caregivers of disabled and terminally ill family members that they were unfairly discriminated against by state policies. The appeal won and went to the High Court, the High Court agreed also. The government gave up and took a different tack. In summary they passed a new “Family Care” policy which upheld their draconian stance by writing clauses into it that effectively locked up access to the rights it was supposedly granting.
The second step-which is by far the most chilling aspect, is that the NZ Government then passed a law effectively making it unable to be legally challenged on its policy. At this point they threw NZ law out the window. The documents from Parliament outlining the basis of this act were then redacted completely so that even the terms and reasons that they were conceived are unknown and not to be revealed-just a pile of blacked out pages. This is on a par with a dictatorship such as North Korea whereby a government literally rewrites the rule book to suit itself and the refuses to explain how or why.
Further to this we also have the commonly named “Anadarko Bill”, thus named because of the oil exploration company it is designed to protect. New Zealand, although a very small country by world standards, is famous for its public spirit in the face of wrongs. New Zealand was the first country in the world to pass legislation allowing women to vote, we doggedly pursued the French over nuclear testing in the Pacific, and even when they committed an act of terrorism on NZ soil, the protests continued until world attention forced them to stop. NZ protested against apartheid in South Africa and was possibly instrumental in the collapse of that regime also. It could be argued that part of the nation’s spirit is based in the democratic right to protest.
The National government earlier this year passed a bill that effectively hobbles any ability to protest at sea. The anti nuclear protests were almost entirely seaborne, and more recently a strong groundswell of sentiment has been expressed against foreign exploration for oil resources under NZ seabeds. The reasons for concern are manifold, however that isn’t the focus. What is the focus is that the NZ government has passed legislation that bans any effective method of marine protest. Not only have they once again savagely violated the rights of the nation’s people but they have also sold those rights in the interests of selling the county’s resources to overseas interests.
So, finally, we must ask ourselves; what happened to John Key? How in a few short years did a man with clearly practical instincts and evidently genuine interest in the country’s welfare come to this? Does Mr Key have some power related mental illness perhaps, such as megalomania? Maybe his fall from moral grace has more sinister roots. Could it be that he has been reached and breached by agents unknown, from global corporate organisations bent on plundering our nation? We suggest to the reader that it is possibly a combination of evils, and to rule nothing out. Our world isn’t the simple playground it once was. Global corporations buy and sell governments; they destabilise nations they wish to plunder or exploit, they conspire and overthrow those that would stand in their way.
In the final analysis of humanity, our survival will not be decided by invisible numbers manipulated in ephemeral cyberspace. Money is a concept only supported by that which it can buy. Without need of it it becomes useless. In times to soon come, other resources will mean so much more than a banker’s ledger, and we will remember why we evolved into the creature we are.
At this point in history more than any other, we need to cherish and protect our humanity and compassion for all we are a part of. The likes of Mr Key and his blind pack of forever hungry rats must be dealt with for what they are-ignorant children whose parents haven’t asserted their boundaries.
You are the parents people, and you’ve let your children take over. Take control, chastise them and send them to Time Out. When you let them back out, educate them.