Fairfax journo Tracy Watkins is letting her wishful thinking get in the way today in a piece where she posits Key is “burning political capital” over the Hager/Fisher GCSB “revelations”.
Are the latest leaked documents important? Yes, of course.
Actually, they’re not.
They detail the vast and indiscriminate store of information gathered by the Government Communications Security Bureau, including plenty that must surely breach the spirit, if not the technicalities, of the 2013 GCSB Act.
Once the media get back to the “spirit” of news reporting instead of running the country, they might actually have a leg to stand on.
The Act spells out that it is illegal for the agency to intercept the private communications of New Zealand citizens and residents, except in specific circumstances or when it is “incidentally obtained” – which, as we now know, is likely to include while they are lying on a beach in Samoa.
There are bound to be diplomatic ripples, meanwhile, over the extent to which the GCSB reaches into the Pacific.
There are bound not to be. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, are particularly unaware of how the real world works, or you have your own ‘outrage’ agenda, people 1) know their stuff is up for grabs, and 2) they truly don’t care.
We are told that the targets include friends and foe alike, though we are yet to see any direct evidence of that claim – say, for instance, a transcript of a private phone call between the prime minister of Samoa and his mates.
Nonetheless, it is probably no coincidence that John Key will embark on a goodwill tour of the Pacific later this year, including a likely stop-off in Fiji.
Yeah, that’s right. John Key wasn’t going on a Pacific trip until Hager and Fisher dusted off some Helen Clark era stolen documents to try and blow some life back into the same old issue. And now Key needs to go around a tour to calm down his Pacific neighbours. That has to be the reason. Read more »