Are Labour for the criminals?

Charles Chauvel has nicely painted Labour into a corner on law and order and the best part it all is he used his own brush and his own paint:

It is the height of arrogance for National to assume that there is such a case, and to announce that it will put the House into urgency to deal with it. I doubt they will get the support they think they will to do this.

We have a Supreme Court now. National need to learn not to engage in knee-jerk, urgent legislation to overturn its decisions if we don’t like them. The debate here need only be about the position we should put the Police in until we have had time to consider the Court’s decision and work out whether their powers need to be supplemented, better regulated, or both.

Charles somewhat disingenuously refused to put Labour’s position in the post. He spends all his time attacking the government for introducing urgent legislation, but he’s too duplicitous to say whether Labour will support it or not.

All he has done is set Labour up for accusations that they are soft on crime and they’d rather let 40 drug dealers before the Courts off the hook.

He also ignores the fact that Labour has passed retrospective legislation under urgency before. You may remember that, it was to stop Darton vs. Clark. Labour, in order to avoid the court case and having to defend their use of $800,000 of taxpayers money illegal taken to fund their campaign passed retrospective legisalation in order to avoid prosecution. Naked self interest.

At least in National’s case they are passing legislation to ensure scum drug dealers and other assorted criminals can remain behind bars and off the streets.

Let us see the the colour of Labour’s jib, are they for law and order or for the criminals?


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  • diabolos

    I understand where you are coming from Cam – and i remember when labour did the retrospective legislation thing. Personally to me – it doesnt matter what party does it – pushing things through under urgency is anti democratic and suspicious.

    I dont want the bad guys getting away with anything – but this sets precedents that are really not very healthy i think.

    I reckon Chauvel is right (in basic terms – forgetting about pollie rhetoric and bluster) – and lets face it – he’s just a pollie – nothing more and nothing less.

  • Misanthropic Curmudgeon

    Labour were quite happy to pass retrospective legislation a few years ago to address an anomily that would keep one of their MPs, Harry Duynhoven, in the house.

  • michael-s

    Are Labour for the criminals?
    And so are the Moari Party.

    • diabolos

      Yeah fuck those fuckin Moaris.

      Fuckin Moaris. Cant even spell – fuckem. Fuckin Moaris…

      Labour arent for criminals – jeezus wept guys – thats just political bullshit rhetoric.

      No one is for the criminals – unless it happens to suit their political aims. In the case of National its all for people who technically stay on the right side of the law – cant be caught – but deep down they have a (sort of) criminal intent – they’re pro gamblers. After all – we’ve got one for a prime minister.

  • Richard McGrath

    WO, when does a ‘scum drug dealer’ become a respectable drug dealer? When he’s being taxed and regulated by the gummint? That is, after all, the essential difference between a tinnie house selling cannabis to adults and a dairy selling tobacco to an adult.

    • So as long as we’re drawing imaginery lines between disconnected subjects (cigarettes, while hazardous to the health of the user, are generally not hallucinogenic), what about the methamphetamine addict Richard? Does your party’s lunatic drug policy also suggest use of methamphetamine is a “victimless crime” and should therefore be decriminalised?

      • Totally agree GG, f**k decriminalisation of hallucinogenic drugs and the liberals that advocate their use.

        IMO anyone dealing in drugs should be shot. I don’t care who they are, the bastards cause so much misery. No point in trying to rehabilitate a dealer.

      • Richard McGrath

        I’m not “drawing imaginery (sic) lines”, I am arguing a point of principle. Are you saying a drug becomes unacceptable when it causes hallucinations? Perhaps you should include alcohol in that, as the withdrawal syndrome can cause hallucinations.

        My point is: what business is it of yours, or anyone else’s including the government, if I sit in my lounge at night and smoke a joint, or inject some smack, or smoke some P, and I don’t bash my kids or hurt anyone else except myself? Are you, like the Puritans, terrified that someone somewhere might be having fun?

        Now I understand your concerns re the misbehaviour of some people while under the use of drugs. My attitude is that people should be held responsible for their actions – whether sober, intoxicated or in withdrawal. It’s the lack of enforcement of this, the disconnection between actions and consequences, that encourages irresponsible drug use.

        The best way to deal with drug-related crime is to make those who commit crime (which implies a victim or victims) responsible for compensating the injured parties.

        Yep it would be a “lunatic drug policy”, to allow people to self-medicate while holding them responsible for their actions. Interesting that it’s been enacted in Portugal these last 10 years, with overall reduction in crime related to obtaining drugs, reduced overall drug use (including in those under age 18), increased rates of enrolment into drug rehab programmes, and decreased rates of HIV infection.

        The prohibition of alcohol in the U.S. from 1919 to 1933 – thus allowing organised crime a free hand as the liquor-selling monopoly – now THAT was a lunatic drug policy.

    • Dion

      Like it or not, tobacco use is culturally acceptable in our society (and has been for generations) and most of its externalities are paid for through taxes.

      Neither of the above statements apply to narcotics – and as such I’m struggling to understand why you’re trying to compare the two.

      • Richard McGrath

        So, Dion, if the externalities of narcotic use were covered by it being legalised, regulated and taxed, would that be acceptable?

        My argument is based around human rights, rather than whether a drug is currently legal or illegal.

        And anyway, tobacco use is very rapidly becoming culturally unacceptable – so should it be outlawed?

  • Mr Blobby

    Interesting that the rush to push through the legislation retrospectively doesn’t apply to the one case that used it successfully.
    I have long believed that the Maori party are little more than the political wing of the Maori elite and the Gangs. I wouldn’t say they are for criminals more, that the laws of New Zealand don’t apply to them unless it suits them.
    And yes our “businessman” for a prime minister was nothing more than a currency speculator.
    If you are really serious about dealing with the drugs issue. The 3 strikes law should have applied to class A drug offenses. If not just legalize drugs like we do alcohol and tobacco.

  • Richard McGrath

    @Gazzaw: “Totally agree GG, f**k decrim­i­nal­i­sa­tion of hal­lu­cino­genic drugs and the lib­er­als that advo­cate their use.”

    Gazzaw wants to outlaw nutmeg and arrest Alison Holst.

    “IMO any­one deal­ing in drugs should be shot. I don’t care who they are, the bas­tards cause so much mis­ery. No point in try­ing to reha­bil­i­tate a dealer.”

    Gazz now wants to shoot all chemists and supermarket owners, and wants a complete government monopoly on all pharmaceuticals. Gee, I wonder if that might just tend to promote a black market in drugs, opening the door to criminals who might be a little less discerning than pharmacists in who they sell their merchandise to… anyway, just a thought.

    To anyone who wants drug dealers hung drawn and quartered . . . what if it was one of your children caught selling a bag of cannabis?

    And do you believe adults have the right to self medicate? Do people have the right to put whatever they want into their body as long as they remain liable for the consequences of their actions at all times? Does a human have sovereignty over their own body – or does the state own them?

    • Bunswalla

      Richard, you’re wasting your time making well-reasoned logical points to fundamentalist idiots such as Gantt Guy and Gazzaw. The former is renowned for not only missing the point entriely, but rambling off in whatever direction his addled mind leads him. The latter needs to have a cup of tea and a wee lie down before he drowns in his own froth.

    • Richard, the big problem is that it doesnt end up self medicating in your own home. You can do what you like to yourself but it doesnt end there. You have to feed your P or your heroin habit and that means you start dealing yourself or you get involved in crime or you damage your family and your kids. Then you expect the state medical system to fix your sorry body and mind. That all takes money (the taxpayer) and you waste valuable health resources that are needed for people who are genuinely ill.

      And no Bunswalla I am neither a fundamentalist nor an idiot. You can do what you want to yourself. I dont give a flying f**k but the big problem is that at the end of the day its the taxpayer that has to pay for your habit and thats what pisses me off.

      • Richard McGrath

        Circular argument, Gazzaw. A P or heroin habit is expensive BECAUSE it is illegal. So, make it legal, the habit will be cheap and less likely to necessitate crime, just as a tobacco habit used to until its taxation went through the roof so that dairies are getting held up and burgled for tobacco. Make drugs dirt cheap and all crime associated with purchasing them will cease.

        And a lot of drug use DOES end with self-medication in the privacy of one’s home. I know; I work 3 days a week in drug treatment centres.

        Easy fix for people with very valid concerns about drug addicts being a drain on the state health system: privatise the health sector, as per Libertarianz Party policy. End of story. Pay for your drug related damage yourself or see if an insurance company will. In very short time the financial results of your lifestyle choices will be driven home.

        One of my methadone treatment patients this morning reminded me that the private sector works better then state control – and he was referring to prisons.

        I’m not blind to the very real concerns people have about the social cost of individuals with drug addiction, but the best deterrent to drug use is making people responsible for the choices they make.

  • thor42

    @diabolos – “Labour aren’t for criminals…..”
    I’m not convinced.
    Labour are for the uneducated masses and ne’er-do-wells. The feckless, the hopeless….. those who are genetically unable to vote for any party other than Labour. That part of the population will have a considerable number of criminals in it.
    Heck, we’ve seen that Labour **themselves** are criminals – the way they insist on ignoring the Elections Act.
    So, it **may** be the case that Labour do not deliberately seek favour with criminals “per se”, but there is NO DOUBT AT ALL that they favour **the segment of the population** (the underclass) which is heavily infested with criminals.

  • Mully

    Richard, the problem with your theory is the “Personal Responsibility” bit – I’m pretty sure those are dirty words in NZ.

    And taking Gazzaw’s views to a ludicrous extreme (“chemists should be shot”, etc) doesn’t help in getting people to take you seriously…

    • Richard McGrath

      Mully, I simply took Gazzaw at his word: “IMO any­one deal­ing in drugs should be shot.”

  • frosty

    Actually the essential difference is that one sells an illegal substance, and the other is selling a permitted substance. Illegal = scum. Legal = respectable. Pretty fucking simple. And if you truly believe that tobacco and weed are equal, then it’s high time we make tobacco illegal too.
    If it was one of my kids caught selling cannabis… I would be in full support of the law and they would have to accept whatever punishment is dealt to them. They know that is my stance, and they know right from wrong.
    The reality is ‘adults’ who ‘self medicate’ are never going to be ‘liable for the consequences of their actions at all times’. The tax payer ends up footing the bill, whether it be through the costs of prosecution, punishment and rehabilitation where a criminal activity results from drug use; or whether it be medical care, short or long term, when someone has a bad trip. The only loss suffered by a druggy is a few more brain cells and some time in front of the xbox, although they probably have those in prison now.
    The state owns everybody. But we are the state. And if you don’t want to be a part of the state, I suggest you don’t pay tax and in turn don’t take advantage of anything funded with tax payer money – even when your P-lab explodes and you need medical attention. The state wants everybody to be healthy and contribute their share (I would say fair but it’s a stupid word overused by lefties) and the state doesn’t want to see our hard earned tax dollars being used to prop up those who deliberately choose to ruin their own lives (and often the lives of others) through substance abuse or other illegal activity.

    • Richard McGrath

      Frosty, you would have loved life in East Germany. “The state owns everybody!” indeed.

      You say people who use drugs are never going to be liable for the consequences of their actions. Well, they certainly aren’t under the current Nanny State where their addiction behaviour is medicalised and taxpayers are made to foot the bill. That’s exactly what I’m against! There’s no reason why the medical, justice and prison systems couldn’t be made self-sufficient through user-pays and other means, so people could rest at peace knowing they weren’t being forced to fund the results of drug use and misuse.

      I love your suggestion of not paying tax (which, by the way, the Libertarianz Party advocates through phasing out taxation), however the current setup doesn’t allow that just yet.

      By the way, if one of my kids was caught selling cannabis, I would be disappointed and would certainly discourage it.

  • sup

    No authority figure is going to force some one to stop using drugs. But complete legalisation for all drugs is stupid. That is as much an ideological position as the people who are against drugs being legal all together. Richard, I agree that much of the cost which falls back on the tax payer is only there because the price of substances are higher the more restriction is on them. But it is the medical costs which will be a problem if all drugs were legal. The fact is judging the person instead of the drug is to simple and ignores the fact that good people really can do bad thing as a result of the drugs they are on.