It’s almost insane isn’t it?
The GCSB get caught out illegally spying on Kim Dotcom, and because he is a multi-millionaire with a multi-millionaire’s legal team, they shake the truth out of the Government and it turns out 85 other NZers have also been illegally spied on by an agency whose only focus was supposed to be foriegn threats.
Let’s not forget before we proceed that the Act creating the GCSB forbade the spy agency to ever spy on NZers and MP after MP all stood in Parliament solemnly promising empty assurances that this purpose built Eye of Mordor would never be turned upon its own citizens.
But those words were hollow. Hidden deep inside the Act was a tiny loophole that went against the entire spirit of the GCSB Act, and it is through this loophole that our GCSB as illegally used that vast power to spy on us.
So how do you think John Key has responded to such grievous abuses of NZers civil rights? Who are the people illegally spied upon? Who will be held accountable for this?
The solution Key is offering goes beyond satire.
Not only will all of the previous illegal spying all be swept under the crept, Key intends to expand the GCSB to legally spy on a vast numbers of NZers and he is going to ram it all through Parliament complete with some pretense at better scrutiny with a 3rd panel member to make NZ First look like they’ve done the right thing.
Feeling safe yet?
The Act dramatically refocuses the GCSB away from foreign intelligence agencies powers, which was it’s justification for existing in the first place, by simply dumping foreign intelligence from it’s list of responsibilities. The focus now is on national security with the Orwellian double speak of “economic well-being” being the code word to put any group who challenges the neoliberal corporate paid economic structure.
Someone who reads this blog would fall into that category.
The 3 new functions are so broad you could now legally spy on the entire city of Christchurch. “Information assurance and cybersecurity”, “Intelligence gathering and analysis”, and “Cooperation with other entities”. This is from a focus only on foreign intelligence to everyone in NZ with a computer.
What is unnerving is the ability to not specifically name someone in the warrant. It can be activists and union members or anyone part of a collective that may be challenging the free market.
The really chilling part are the new penalties for any GCSB staff who speak out against what the agency is doing.
Make no mistake – John Key’s new GCSB spying powers are a sharp goose step towards a casual Police State.
The Eye of Mordor can now spy on the Shire and we’ve just let Key do it. There can be no justifications about granting the State this amount of unfettered power over our lives.
For a nation that screamed Nanny State over the right to smack your kids, it is astonishing that we would so quietly acquiesce to Big Brother.