September 20th, 2011

oh

Don't come to New Zealand, it's turning into a police state

What the fucking fuck? This government is well known for abuse of urgency to push through laws (note, that list doesn't include the the Filesharing bill or the Youth ID bill which went through under very dodgy circumstances (seriously, read that second article) earlier this year.

Now, the government is changing the law so that the illegal surveillance footage the police took for the Urewera debacle can be admissible in court. That is, instead of investigating illegal police conduct and ensuring the police don't break the law in future, they are making covert surveillance on private property legal. There's some confusion in the article as to whether this law will be applied to the footage related to the four still facing charges in the Urewera case, but I'll bet you dollars to doughnuts that it wll be.

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So, if you weren't already convinced that this government is playing fast and loose with our legal system and blatantly abusing the lawmaking process, perhaps now you might be. And if not, maybe you will be when the cameras turn up in your house.

For contrast, the government has refused to do anything about the Law Commission's recommendations for the review of the Misuse of Drugs Act. They agree that it's outdated and should be changed, but "slow and steady is the best approach to law reform" and "the government shouldn't make major policy decisions so close to an election."

I don't know about you, but allowing police to get away with illegal surveillance on private property by MAKING IT LEGAL UNDER URGENCY seems like a pretty major fucking policy decision. Just saying.

PS for those who'd like to know more, here is a more detailed rundown.