Contrasting reactions to Campbell Live on GCSB

Last night Campbell Live re-ran an examination of John Key, the GCSB, US intelligence, Ian Fletcher. More revelations were claimed.

Key’s meeting with GCSB boss revealed

On December 16, 2011, the GCSB began its illegal surveillance of Kim Dotcom.

Neither the Prime Minister, nor the incoming GCSB head Ian Fletcher, were told about it.

But tonight Campbell Live can reveal that Mr Fletcher had taken leave from his job in Queensland, Australia, to be in Wellington that week, and that he and the Prime Minister met the GCSB that same week.

Mr Key and Mr Fletcher had a secret meeting that has never previously been revealed, despite all the requests for details of when the pair had met during the year of Mr Fletcher’s somewhat controversial appointment to the job.

Reaction on Twitter was very mixed (mostly along partisan lines) but the impression I got is that much of what was shown was a repeat of what had already been aired, with the addition of a little more information. Not a smoking gun, and a lot of coincidental meetings and events rather than solid evidence.

Blog reaction was also very mixed, also along partisan lines in both posts and comments.

Martyn Bradbury at The Daily Blog: Campbell Live Review: Extraordinary new GCSB revelations

What’s the difference between John Key and a Predator Drone? Trick question, there is no difference, both are controlled by Washington. Last nights astonishing revelations on Campbell Live prove how true that joke really is.

This country owe John Campbell and the Campbell Live team a standing ovation for the courage they have shown in pursuing this story. This is true journalism at its finest, not the National Party broadcast that is Seven Sharp. John and Campbell Live are revealing the true story of Power that John Key is desperate to hide.

There was once a time NZ would stand as one in disgust at this spineless subservience to America, we need to remind ourselves that we are not Obama’s South Pacific golf caddy and need that reminder this election.

Karol at The Standard: Campbell Live: Fletcher, Key, Clapper et al

Campbell Live is in the middle of showing a special on the GCSB. It is presenting information never before made public. It includes the US head of intelligence coming to NZ just before Key set up Ian Fletcher for the head of GCSB job.

Campbell is showing has shown how there was a major shift going on in NZ and 5 Eyes’ approach to intelligence.

3 News obviously think it’s pretty important.

Commenters thought it was pretty important too.

In contrast David Farrar at Kiwiblog: The Campbell Live Dotcom conspiracy episode

You have to all go and watch Campbell Live tonight and try and stop laughing.

It’s classic conspiracy theory stuff. You especially have to like the spooky sinister music they played. They say they’ve been working on the story for three years. Seriously? They even make it sounds sinister that a civilian instead of military was made GCSB Head and an outsider was made MFAT Head. Yes Allan and Fletcher were both plants by John Key, so that they could all conspire with the US to spy on Kim Dotcom!!

Also part of the conspiracy is that Fletcher had worked for the UK Government (also in Five Eyes) in the Intellectual Property Office (which ties in to Dotcom!).

This is the funniest episode ever. Please please watch it, so you can laugh.

Comments are more open and varied than the Daily Blog and Standard which have more restrictive moderation.

Campbell Live’s timeline:

March 8th 2011 – Jerry Mateparae is stepped down as head of the GCSB.

March 15th 2011 – Top NSA spook, James Clapper, flies to NZ to meet with Key to discuss ‘synchronicity’ between the NSA and GCSB.

June 17th 2011 – Key meets with Ian Fletcher for breakfast at Stamford Plaza.

July 22nd 2011 – Key is invited to Washington as pay back for this new ‘synchronicity’.

July 26th 2011 – Key side steps normal protocols and appoints his old school friend Ian Fletcher to take over at the GCSB.

December 8th 2011 – A letter states that Key is going to meet Ian Fletcher on 12th December

December 12th 2011 – Key meets with Ian Fletcher.

December 14th 2011 – The Police boss responsible for spying on Dotcom meets John Key with other intelligence agencies present.

December 16th 2011 – Kim Dotcom starts to be illegally spied upon.

January 2012 – Raid on Kim Dotcom.

UPDATE: A more measured post from Russell Brown at Public Address: Circumstance and coincidence

…certainly, the report was principally a re-stating of previously-aired facts. But its new claims were not immaterial.

It also seems unusual that the Prime Minister, the minister responsible for the GCSB, would not even have known who Dotcom was until January 19, the day before the raid on the Dotcom mansion. But no one can prove otherwise. There is only circumstance and coincidence.

There are misleading statements, unfortunate failures of memory, and the fact that almost everything we know about the whole mess has had to be dug out by journalists. Campbell Live may turn out to have grossly over-reached, as its critics insist. But there seems every reason to keep digging.

Cunliffe genuine at home, disappointing in Q & A

We’ve been given a very good insight into the real person David Cunliffe, but the next day he is back to a trying-to-hard politician.

I had been dubious about the concept of Campbell Live’s ‘At Home with the Leaders’, especially the family intrusion aspect,  but especially with David Cunliffe and his wife Karen it has been worthwhile, providing an interesting insight into a side of Cunliffe I’ve heard of but I haven’t seen before.

Cunliffe at home

We got to see more of the real person than the politician.

John Campbell: Why do you polarise people?

David Cunliffe: I don’t know, you tell me. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t.

All politicians and people in politics polarise, particularly partisan polarisation, some people from the right will never like a Labour MP and especially not the leader of their main Opposition. But Cunliffe appears to also polarise on the left, and the polarisation over him in the current Labour Caucus is often talked about.

David Cunliffe: I hope that as people get to know me they will realise that I’m here to help, and that I’m in it for the right reasons. and I hope that they’ll forgive me a few learning curves and rough edges as I settle into this job. I’m learning all the time.

John Campbell: One last question for the man who wants to be Prime Minister. Why?

David Cunliffe: I’m a social democrat, I’m in it for people. I know we have to make lasting change, but we do it with people, not just for them. So you know, there’s a lot underneath that, but it’s about people first really, yeah.

I believe Cunliffe really wants to change things for people for the better. Like most politicians across the spectrum. Cunliffe seems at times to have a religious-like passion for this.

There’s obvious positives with that, but one way Cunliffe seems to polarise is when he looks like he is preaching from a priestly pedestal.

John Campbell: I want to ask Karen a question. Do you think he’s different in public than he is with you? I mean, is it hard to be authentic in a public way?

Karen: I think, um, his hardest thing is the TV and the Press Gallery. I think when he’s out with people he is really energetic with people, he loves people, it’s kind of like pastoral care for him. So he’s always loved doing his clinics. When you see him with his constituents it’s quite lovely.  But then I see the softer side. He’s a really lovely Dad. Um, he’s a lovely husband.

That sounds very good for an electorate MP. Stepping up to party leader, and potentially to Prime Minister, requires quite different personality and skills.

I don’t doubt his intent and he seems much more genuine and personable in this Campbell Live insight, but in public appearances there can be too much tendency towards “me the leader” and not enough “us the people”.

David Cunliffe: I’m actually just trying to learn to relax, be composed, just take it as it comes and not overthink it, so it’s like, you’ve gotta get over the hump and down the other side, if you know what I’m saying. 

I gotta say that this appearance aside Cunliffe still looks very much like he is on the hump. He is coming across as a preacher of doom and gloom under the current Government, and attempts to entice voters to his next government heaven.

Cunliffe in Parliament

The already converted may be convinced he offers them salvation from the evil Key, but religion is a hard sell in New Zealand these days.

Campbell Live’s ‘At  home with David Cunliffe’ was on Monday night. The following evening Cunliffe did a Q & A in David Cunliffe on The Standard.

This was disappointing. There was no pressure of journalists or cameras, but it seemed to be a series of cut and pastes from the same old practiced verses, political sermons.

The introduction looked like it could have come from his last speech or media release. It concluded:

We will be a progressive government. Kiwis have always believed in working hard, and in looking after each other, and we have always believed in equality and in freedom.

We’re a nation I am immensely proud to be have grown up in, to be a part of.

And we are a nation I will be immensely proud to lead.

The next Labour-led Government will end the politics of division, the politics of the privileged few versus the rest, and will work alongside all New Zealanders, in the interests of all New Zealanders.

Because I believe that we need to put people first if we are to build the prosperous and vital nation we all want to live in. I’m really keen to talk to you about how we get there, together.

So how did he “talk to you”? His first two questions:

shorts: How long do you think it will take for labour and your partners to address the issue inequality in our land?

By that I mean how long for the people to see real changes to their lives and standard of living – appreciate you can’t give an exact date but I’m interested in how long you feel it’ll take your polices be enacted, to bed in and start to have a meaningful effect.

David Cunliffe: As soon as possible is the short answer. We’ll be moving on the most urgent issues in our first 100 days, like raising the minimum wage and giving Kiwi workers their rights back.

But we’re trying to dig our way out 30 years of neoliberalism. It’s not going to happen overnight – case in point, John Key has racked up a crushing debt.

amirite: what are Labour policies concerning people on benefits, the raising of retirement age and the means testing for pensioners? Also, Labour stance on mining and deep sea oil drilling.

David Cunliffe: Our priority is to get kids out of poverty – that’s why our Best Start payment includes the children of beneficiaries; they shouldn’t bear the brunt of their parents’ misfortune.

But the real answers to benefits are secure jobs that pay decent wages.

Retirement age: Managing a long-term transition to a 67+ universal NZ Super – with a transition benefit for those cannot continue work in their normal occupation after 65 and they are in financial need, so they’re no worse off.

Short answer on deep sea drilling: Principled and pragmatic. We see it as only possible under world best practise environment standards, including full liability cover, clean-up capacity, local input, and a realistic level of public revenue – and all this within a clear plan for transition to a low carbon renewable energy future.

Same old sermons. More of the same poliparroting followed. And questions weren’t read carefully:

Liberal Realist: When will Labour provide public disclosure of the TPPA, should a Labour lead government be elected in September?

David Cunliffe: Yes.

Apart from John Campbell’s revelation Cunliffe is still ‘on the hump’. If he wants to connect with more people he has to come down the other side and actually listen, and to speak as himself, not as his speech writers and media trainers.

Wright versus Palino “harassment and bullying”

Campbell Live confronted John Palino yesterday, significantly contrasting with their treatment of Len Brown – John Palino: what did he know about Chuang affair?

John Palino, unsuccessful Auckland mayoral candidate.

He’s been silent since news of the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang affair broke.

But what role did he or those involved in his campaign play in the saga becoming public?

Rebecca Wright caught up with him this morning.

That doesn’t say much because hardly anything new was said. The video of the interview shows that Palino was accosted in a car park. He was obviously not prepared for an interview. He kept referring to the statement he put out two weeks ago.

Wright wouldn’t accept this and kept pushing aggressively, refusing to accept his explanation, saying it was “not plausible”.

@DrBrianEdwards tweeted:

“Interviewing” John Palino, Campbell Live’s Rebecca Wright confuses harassment and bullying with journalism. You’re not a prosecutor, Madam!

This seems to be a common approach by Campbell Live and Wright, if someone won’t agree to an interview they hammer their target as if in punishment for not complying with their demands.

This was a marked contrast to the John Campbell ‘interview” with Len Brown, where Brown used the occasion as a carefully rehearsed PR opportunity. It was notable how soft Campbell was on Brown.

The headline could have been written by Brown’s spin team, ‘My apologies but stand by me’ – Len Brown, as could the report. Campbell all but put his arm around Brown and hugged him.

Questions remain about the Len Brown affair/s but Brown has not been harrassed by Campbell Live.

This unbalanced approach by Campbell Live probably reflects in the show’s inability to take advantage of an insipid Seven Sharp, it continues to struggle to compete – see CAMPBELL LIVE VS SEVEN SHARP: WEEK 38 at Throng.

Campbell Live has built a reputation of being very left friendly and antagonistic to the political centre and right . This continued bias alienates many potential viewers.

Perhaps John Campbell is happy to have a show where he can promote his own politics and dish out utu for those who don’t comply with his interview requests, but this must deter many advertisers, and it must affect the bottom line for TV3.

Campbell’s GCSB poll – too important

Campbell Live gave the results of their GCSB poll – 89% opposed, 11% for it. No surprise there.

Surprising to see it being promoted as a credible measure of public opinion.

The biggest poll in TV3’s history. The results of our GCSB vote are coming up.

Andrew covers it well at Grumpollie.

GCSB poll – bogus self-selecting poll vs random poll

Oppose/not in favour of GCSB bill or support/in favour of GCSB bill?*

  • Research NZ random poll: 52% not in favour, 36% in favour (11% don’t know)
  • Campbell Live self-selecting poll: 89% oppose, 11% support (don’t know not offered as a valid response)

Don’t trust self-selecting polls if you want to accurately measure the views of the general public, or if you’re polling on something you think is important.

The problem here was that getting a result that promoted his cause was what was most important to John Campbell.

The poll is already being quoted around social media of proof of the level of opposition.

I like some of what Campbell does, and can’t be bothered with some as well – but this would have to be the most prominent sustained cases of journalism gone off the rails that I’ve seen.

I doubt it was blatantly dishonest – more like blinded by owning the cause. The poll became too important for Campbell to recognise the massive flaws.

Campbell Live GCSB campaign flop

John Campbell and his Campbell Live show has been campaiging strongly against the GCSB bill. This campaign shifted up a couple of gears last week with a daily does of a dual GCSB road road show, plus and interview with John Key on the GCSB on Wednesday.

One of the things Campbell was trying to prove was that there was far more interest in the GCSB Bill than Key had been claiming (“more people are worried about snapper”).

Ratings for Monday-Thursday were consistently bad for the show, as shown by Throng’s comments in Act of God revives Campbell Live’s ratings, and this chart:

They only recovered on Friday when a GCSB road team happened to arrive in Seddon just after the earthquake and there was good coverage of that.

This doesn’t tell us whether it was the topic or the way the topic was being covered that turned off viewers, but iCampbell’s hard out anti GCSB bill campaign was a rating flop.

Tonight Campbell will have the results of the campaign poll, but this is so flawed it wil tell us nothing apart from how many people bothered to respond.

We’ll see if Campbell turns to other topics for the rest of the week,or whther he is so personally involved in the GCSB campaign that trying to win on that is more important to him than ratings.

Key speaks strongly, belatedly on GCSB bill

John Key appeared on Campbell Live last night to put forward his side of the argument on the GCSB bill. He accused John Campbell and other anti-bill campaigners of being wrong and misleading people with incorrect claims.

“You’ve done so many stories which are absolute nonsense and you know they are, and I’ve actually answered those in the past.”

Key forcefully defended his bill, and emphatically claimed it would not allow widespread surveillance as claimed by some opponents.

John Key defends the GCSB bill

The Prime Minister says under the changes, the GCSB will need to obtain a warrant from the Commissioner of High Security Warrants – a retired court judge appointed by Mr Key.

“[The surveillance of] Kim Dotcom was illegal under the old law, which is why I apologised, and it’s illegal under the new law,” Mr Key says.

Mr Key says some discussion around the bill has been misrepresented, and the organisation will not be able to spy on New Zealanders.

“The point here is that you’re going into a shop, or you’re going down the main street of New Zealand, and you are saying, ‘Do you want to be spied on?’ If you come and ask me that question the answer is no. But you cannot do that under Section Eight,” he says.

Mr Key says the GCSB stopped surveillance of 88 New Zealanders last year under advice from lawyers.

“I’m a bit busy running the country…so I don’t need to go in there and read out a pro-former second reading speech,” he said when asked why he did not show up to the committee stages or second reading of the bill, before accusing Campbell Live of creating stories around the Dotcom saga.

Mr Key says the original problems with the GCSB stem from a section passed by the Labour Government in 2003.

This is sparse coverage, Key said much more. See the video to hear everything.

Key should have made the time to make his case on his bill weeks ago, but better late than not at all.

There has been a mixed reaction. Not surprisingly, those with a vested interest in opposition and protest were not impressed.

‘Everyone is wrong except me’ – we have a psychopath as a PM – Key vs Campbell TV review

By  

Effectively Key’s message was that EVERYONE ELSE is wrong and that he is right. It was a psychopathic display of God complex proportions but it was also a terrifying reminder that Shearer has got to do something between now and the election to upgrade to a level of almost superhuman dimensions.

Bradbury is a master of overstatement but of little else. More observant comment from the left:

Lew@LewSOS 

No matter how you slice it, PM splitting GCSB haters into “still hate it but he did good” and “OMG he was so full of shit” is a massive win

Challenged:

Nick Taylor@ikostar

But he didn’t. BTW, “slice” isn’t the word, “spin” is… and spin doesn’t really work if it’s desperately obvious.

Clarified:

Lew@LewSOS

I meant to distinguish “opponents” of the GCSB Bill from the more vigorous “haters” of the GCSB particularly.

Due to a lack of argument (until now) from Key and National the GCSB bill opposition has grown more and more extreme. It’s probably too late to change that, but middle New Zealand may be more satisfied by Key’s staunch defence – and his absolute assurance the bill will not allow widespread surveillance of New Zealanders.

Campbell Live poll and deceitful democracy

Campbell Live is running a poll on the GCSB bill which will run until the results are announced on Monday 19th August. This coincides with a “Fill the Town Hall and Stop the GCSB Bill” campaign meeting in Auckland.

Whale Oil has had a dig at the poll – Is the Campbell Live GCSB Poll a piss-take or what? Whale points out the irony of capturing of private data in a poll about the capturing of private data.

More significantly a pollster points out obvious deficiencies in the poll – Campbell Live GCSB poll commits the ultimate sin of survey research which points out a@CampbellLiveNZ tweet:

In the next week we’re aiming for the biggest opinion poll in NZ history. Do you support the GCSB Bill? Vote here.

Andrew explains what anyone familiar with polling will know.

Here’s a really important point for anyone wanting to judge the accuracy of this poll –big numbers do not provide representative data!

Here’s why…

This poll commits the ultimate sin of survey research – it uses a self-selecting sample.

People choose to take part based on the topic. This means that the poll only represents the New Zealanders who feel strongly enough about the GCSB bill to take part in the poll.

The only way to attempt to gain a representative result is to take a random sample of New Zealanders, and to ask them the question. Preferably, the topic of the poll shouldn’t be given to people in advance, so their decision about whether to take part will not be based on the topic in question.

He then shows how self-selection with polls can “make an enormous difference”.

But it’s worse than simply self-selection.

It takes a bit more effort but it’s still possible to vote multiple times in the poll.

And there are active campaigns to distort the poll to try and achieve a particular outcome. There is a major effort to make the poll a PR device which is a distortion of democracy.

And it is likely to be promoted elsewhere.

Ironically a commenter ‘geoff’ at The Standard complains about the results being skewed by National.

Why put any merit in an online poll? Sure the GCSB bill will attract a lot of people who are legitimately against it but it is also going to attract the attention of National’s ‘Research Unit’ who, no doubt, will have a room full of people working day and night filling out the form and skewing the results.

The results will be skewed for sure, but it will impossible to tell how much and in which direction the most skewing has occurred.

And this is becoming common. And skewed results are being used in PR campaigns to try and create deceitful perceptions.

It’s a common practice now to use a protest, a poll, a petition or stack submissions to create a perception of democratic opinion. This is deceitful democracy.

Campbell Live should know better. Unless they do know what they are doing.

Campbell Live GCSB poll

Campbell Live is running a different sort of online poll, on the GCSB bill. Most media polls online are easily manipulated. They seem to be making an effort to minimise rigged voting in this one, as they are requesting Name, email address and address.

This an improvement, but it doesn’t get around the problem of non-random sampling. Groups can organise voting to try and sway it their way – and they have already started to promote it in social media of a particular persuasion.

Campbell GCSB poll

I’d like to see people also asked:

  • if they have read the bill
  • if they have read the amendments that have been passed in Parliament
  • if they understand the bill

But polls don’t usually care about things like that.

My guess is that it will show a sizeable number of people opposed to the bill, but most people don’t care about the bill and won’t bother voting.

Also unusual is the timeframe, the poll will be run over more than a week.

Thank you for taking the time to have your say on the GCSB bill. Find out what the rest of the country thinks when the results are revealed on Campbell Live on Monday August 19th.

That’s an interesting date. It might be a coincidence, but a a major protest meeting is organised for the same night.

This is (not surprisingly) being promoted at The Daily Blog and also at The Standard – Fill the Hall – Kill the Bill.

There are a significant number of people passionate about stopping the bill, and a lot more using it as a political opportunity to oppose the Government.

But I still don’t know if the wider public care much or know much about this.

Dunne done over while parties piss and pose

Peter Dunne alone appears to have done more to tidy up the GCSB Amendment Bill than all other MPs combined yet he is copping most of the flak, criticism and abuse for not doing enough, or for doing anything.

Dunne has done what any MP (or party) should do, he has worked with Government on improving a bill that many claim is of utmost importance for the security of the country and the privacy of the people. He has initiated significant improvements.

But because he hasn’t re-written the entire bill on his own, or because he hasn’t halted the bill, or because he hasn’t done nothing, Dunne is heaped with scorn, abuse and ridicule.

Dunne has compromised on his ideals (he prefers the GCSB did not spy at all on New Zealanders) to achieve significant gains, and he is vilified and accused of flip flopping and u-turning.

While the other parties do nothing because they can’t get their own way, or because they can’t be bothered actually contributing positively to the parliamentary process.

Such is the pissiness of politics and the press in New Zealand.

In return for Dunne’s GCSB vote

Campbell Live wanted to ask him today, but he was too busy doing whatever he does to be interviewed.

So reporter Rebecca Wright looked at the press conference he gave yesterday in search of an explanation.

And then she pissed on Dunne with what looked like petulant punishment for not playing along with her story.

Andrea Vance, who often wears an excellent journalist hat, replaced that with her ‘opinion’ political activist hat and expressed her displeasure at Dunne not delivering everything she wanted. In Dunne turnaround on spy bill Vance sounds pissed off and pissy. She should remember that she has not been elected, and I’d be surprised if she’s a member of any party. A personal crusade seems to have usurped her professionalism.

And there’s Gordon Campbell on Peter Dunne’s illusory gains on GCSB Bill:

The changes that Dunne has won as a pre-condition of his support could hardly be more token…

Campbell’s impartiality, accuracy and balance wasn’t even token. But he does also take aim at Winston Peters.

On national security issues, it is hard to see Peters standing resolutely in opposition alongside Labour and the Greens.

Resolutely in opposition. Labour and Greens. That’s obviously what Campbell wants but it’s hardly what we are getting.

Russel Norman is sort of sounding principled and is unlikely to ever have supported the bill. But his line is nothing more than if the Government won’t do it his way he will do nothing else but oppose and criticise. Nothing positive to contribute.

David Shearer is similar but doesn’t even sound principled. If there was ever a time for Shearer to show leadership, if there was ever an opportunity to step up and show he could lead the way to a decent cross-party solution, it is now. But as usual he recites a few worn out phrases and adds nothing useful. Oh, he has replaced his head of staff. If only he could replace what’s in his head.

Winston Peters has done what he usually does, harrumph and complain and try to diss Dunne some more. But nothing to contribute.

The Maori Party? I emailed Te Ururoa Flavell asking what their position was but no response. Maybe they don’t care if the GCSB spies on Maori.

Hone Harawira has complained about the GCSB in the past, but at the business end of the bill where is he?

At least John Banks has put contributed something useful:

Act leader John Banks has secured a change to get a set of principles written into the bill including the requirement for the GCSB to have regard to the Bill of Rights Act 1990, which protects New Zealanders against unreasonable search and surveillance.

He could have tried more but that’s something worth having.

But the main opposition parties won’t get their way so won’t do anything but oppose.

But Labour and New Zealand First, who wanted a more immediate review, last night remained adamant that they would oppose the bill, and it will pass with a majority of just one.

The Greens called the changes cosmetic and will also oppose it.

And piss on Peter Dunne. They criticise the one MP who has worked hard to secure useful improvements to the bill. While they contribute nothing but bitching.

One MP does more than 120 MPs combined, and cops the blame and vitriol for the failure of others to front up.

Petty party posing and point scoring seems more important to Labour, Greens and NZ First than security of the country and privacy of the people.

So Dunne is done over for doing what any decent MP should do.

Piss poor.

Could the GCSB spy on us for foreign governments?

I seem to have missed something major – or Campbell Live and 3 News have got something terribly wrong. Does the GCSB Amendment Bill allow the GCSB to spy on New Zealanders for foreign governments?

Last night Campbell Live ran an item called Dissecting the GCSB bill.

Except they didn’t dissect the bill. They detailed a number of meetings and events in July and August 2011 that could be interesting coincidences, or could highlight something that hasn’t been fully revealed to the extent of being alarming.

But they opened the item and they lead their online news report with:

In short, the GCSB bill allows the organisation to spy on New Zealanders and to pass what they learn on to foreign governments.

That’s very different to what I understood and it is also alarming, if it’s correct.

I  understood the primary aim of the bill is fix a lack of clarity and to make it legal for the GCSB to spy on New Zealanders on behalf of other New Zealand agencies. This is a key section of the bill:

8C Co-operation with other entities to facilitate their functions

(1) This function of the Bureau is to cooperate with, and provide advice and assistance to, the following for the purpose of facilitating the performance of their functions:

(a) the New Zealand Police; and
(b) the New Zealand Defence Force; and
(c) the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service; and
(d) any department (within the meaning of the Public Finance Act (1989) specified for the purposes of this section by the Governor-General by Order in Council made on the recommendation of the Minister)

No mention of foreign governments there. I don’t see how any department (within the meaning of the Public Finance Act (1989) could include any foreign agency or government.

I thought the GCSB was forbidden from spying on New Zealand citizens, and the controversy and the amendment bill was to allow them to legally spy on New Zealanders only as an agent of other New Zealand agencies, in particular the SIS and the Police.

I don’t see how it allows spying for foreign governments. And that must not be allowed – the bill should fail if it is trying to enable it.