The media reaction to the police raid on Nicky Hager’s house was predictable. See for instance the NZ Herald editorial on Friday 10 October. It is too close to home for them as well and they are right to be scared. This goes at least for the media, who take their jobs seriously and are not just cheerleaders for this National government.
We have to say that the police acted with a warrant issued by a judge and therefore the legality of their action cannot be questioned at this stage. However there doesn’t seem to be one and the same law for all.
If you break into a Labour Party computer and access confidential data and even boast about it to your political friends that seems to be ok with the police. No discernible action taken. Wouldn’t it be nice to have Mr Slater’s computer and other gadgets taken from him – and he is not just a witness but a perpetrator – to give us a break from his Hate Blog. There would even be a good chance that the police would find the evidence they would be looking for as Mr Slater proved to be stupid and lax with his precautions.
On the other hand Nicky Hager is not stupid and one would be very surprised if the police would find anything to identify the offender they are looking for. However they will find heaps of stuff any self-respecting journalist wouldn’t want anybody to see the least the government.
The timing is also revealing as one of the first acts of the new government after the election because it cannot be described otherwise. How else can a reasonable observer explain the difference between the police action and in-action other than being political. The police know who their masters are and don’t even need to be told.
And here is the thing. New Zealand once prided itself as not being corrupt where police acted at arms length without political influence. These times are truly gone. The police seem to make a habit of doing political favours to their masters especially concerning incidents around election time. Remember the persecution of the hapless cameraman unintentionally leaving his microphone in a very public place where Mr Key and the convicted fraudster Mr Banks had tea.
The only results so far have not been legal victories for the police but more or less successful intimidation not just of the victims of their actions but everyone critical of the government. That seems to be the (only) intention.
We are looking at corruption when we see that the government puts their cronies in charge of security services and then uses them for their own political benefit (like expediently dealing with Official Information Act requests). And now the police.
The real scary part is that the government is now using the old chestnut of “terrorism” to ever increase the police and security services powers to control its own people. Does anybody remember the “terrorism” of 1933 – the burning of the Reichstag/Parliament building in Berlin – and what happened next ?Tweet ##NZPOL