David Shearer, stand up and do something! The GCSB Amendment Bill deserves, demands your input, your leadership. The people and the country deserve it.
The bill is currently being debated and decided on something that is important for the protection and security of New Zealand. And it is important for the protection of privacy of the citizens of the country.
If any bill deserves the best efforts of all parties to get the best result it is the GCSB Amendment Bill.
Where are Shearer and Labour on this? It seems that they are Missing In Action.
The GCSB usually operates in secret. We have to trust them. And we have to trust a small number of politicians to use and control the GCSB wisely.
It will be much easier to trust them if we can trust the legislation that allows them to do their job but protects the people from having their communications and data misused and abused.
The current version of the bill is seriously flawed, according the Law Society, InternetNZ, the Human Rights Commission and others.
We should be able to have faith in our MPs and their parties to do everything they can to ensure the GCSB bill is properly debated and resolved.
National have acknowledged they will have to modify the bill.
Peter Dunne is negotiating with National and has agreed on one change so far, on provisions for an independent oversight panel, something that was proposed by New Zealand First. Negotiations are continuing – Dunne’s GCSB vote still uncertain.
Peter Dunne says the Government’s consideration of a three-person panel for the Government Communications Security Bureau puts it a step closer to securing his vote, but more concessions will need to be made.
The United Future leader wants the bill to include more protection for individuals’ privacy, recognition of the Bill of Rights Act and more accountability.
John Banks is also talking with National – Banks asks for guiding principles in GCSB bill.
ACT Leader John Banks today confirmed that he has been in discussions with the Prime Minister and officials over the inclusion of a set of guiding principles in the Government Communications Security Bureau and Related Legislation Amendment Bill.
“In addition, ACT has asked that the Office of the Inspector-General of Security and Intelligence is ‘beefed up’. The Inspector General provides independent oversight and acts as a complaints mechanism for New Zealanders.
“I appreciate John Key’s leadership in building a Parliamentary majority for the bill and I will continue to work with the Prime Minister over the coming weeks to ensure the legislation is clear and robust,” Mr Banks said.
Dunne also supports this and Key has said it has merit – Key may make second concession on GCSB bill.
“I actually think that’s quite a good idea,” Mr Key told reporters at Parliament yesterday.
Mr Key said he would ask officials advising the Intelligence and Security Committee to work on that suggestion.
But what is Labour doing? Corin Dann writes – Can Labour and National compromise on GCSB?
Now it is a given that John Key will make changes to this bill in the hope of securing support from Mr. Dunne and New Zealand First.
However, the more pressing questions are: will John Key go the extra mile to entice Labour to support the bill? And will Labour play ball?
Labour in the eyes of centre ground voters will be in danger of looking like it is playing petty politics with national security.
So what are Labour playing at?
In General Debate in Parliament last week Labour deputy leader Grant Robertson gave an eloquent but negative speech that lambasted National on GCSB issues. And Robertson described Peter Dunne, as “completely lost his way, totally discredited”.
Dunne is heavily involved in GCSB bill negotiations and is a key player. What is Robertson doing other than rubbishing others who are doing the important work? Making ironic speeches that achieve nothing.
And what is Labour leader David Shearer doing? Sitting around waiting for a phone call apparently. While Key reaches out over GCSB bill…
…Labour leader David Shearer had a message for Mr Key last night: if he is serious about negotiating on the GCSB bill “it would be a good idea to pick up the phone”.
Mr Shearer was annoyed that Mr Key has started talking publicly about areas of possible compromise on the bill without talking to him first.
Oh my god! If Shearer gets more annoyed is Key more likely to give him a call? That’s as likely as Shearer’s Labour colleagues stopping undermining him.
There is an opportunity and a need for Shearer to stand up and show some leadership, On this bill. Now.
Labour’s position has been to oppose the bill until a review of intelligence agencies is held.
Key has offered a compromise that is actually better for the long term – a regular five yearly review. But the first has been suggested for 2015. And so far Shearer is unwilling to change his stance.
For fucks sake Shearer, you have been Labour leader for 19 months. Show some actual leadership!
If he sits waiting by the phone the most likely call he will get is advising him of a successful coup against him.
If Shearer can’t step up now and take a lead role in resolving the deficiencies in the GCSB bill, if he can’t step up and work hard for protection of the country and protection of the privacy of the citizens, then he might as well find somewhere else to sit, other than Parliament.
Stand up now Shearer! Or you might as well bugger off.