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August 17, 2014 6:35 PM   Subscribe

Kim Dotcom is working hard to keep himself out of jail.

He believes he was granted residency as part of a US plan to extradite him. He's created a political party now polling as high as 4% (NZ has an MMP system with a 5% threshold) and has plans to bring Glenn Greenwald to New Zealand right before the national election. But John Key, Prime Minister, and his right-wing National party have been polling extremely well in their re-election effort. John Key denies knowledge of any plan to extradite Dotcom, but the public don't believe him. Now, Nicky Hager has published Dirty Politics, a book which draws comparisons to Richard Nixon and is based on a trove of hacked correspondence apparently made possible by a DDoS attack on a popular right-wing blog Whale Oil Beef Hooked after he posted "Feral dies in Greymouth, did world a favour". Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater accused Kim Dotcom of being the hacker. John Key has called it a smear campaign. after an effigy of him was burned earlier in the week. Slater further responded live from Israel. John Key then produced what marquee right-wing columnist Matthew Hooton called his worst interview in 6 years as PM. Now, the person claiming to be Hager's source for the hacked emails says he will release more material on twitter, using Dotcom's Mega service for encryption, and carrying Julian Assange's embassy address. Also, memes.
posted by dimejubes (31 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

 
That meme makes more sense with the email screenshots from the twitter account.
posted by dimejubes at 6:44 PM on August 17


I had not known of the Cardboard Cathedral.
posted by thelonius at 6:59 PM on August 17


Why have all the "Five Eyes" Anglo-Saxon countries moved so far to the right in the past decade? (... I consider Obama's administration to be center-right)
posted by Auden at 7:36 PM on August 17 [1 favorite]


Do remember that New Zealand's 'centre-right' government is still Albania-style 1980s communism by US standards. Free education and public health, nuclear-free status, universal welfare and as-of-right superannuation are all locked in; and when the Police did a raid on a literal armed rebellion training camp up in the bush a few years back they ended up charging a few people with gun-licensing infringements and apologising en masse to the rest.

It's goddam adorable.
posted by Sebmojo at 7:44 PM on August 17 [9 favorites]


I doubt he can pull this off, but it just adds to my fascination with the man. I have such conflicted feelings about him. I love him, I hate him, I can't look away.
posted by Literaryhero at 7:49 PM on August 17


Kim Dotcom is not the hero we want... I'm not at all convinced he's the hero we need... he's just the hero we're stuck with until something better comes along.
posted by oneswellfoop at 8:28 PM on August 17 [2 favorites]


He does use 'drone' as a verb, which I think I might start copying. As in "The US government shouldn't drone people." I realize that it kind of reduces the impact of saying 'murder from the air', but it is funny.
posted by Literaryhero at 8:38 PM on August 17


I hate this guy. Stuff like this: "The internet is only 20 years old."
posted by stbalbach at 8:47 PM on August 17 [1 favorite]


My partner, whose name is Kim, has a little song I sing to her:

Kim Dot Babycakes
Babycakes
Babycakes
Kim Dot Babycakes
Babycakes
Babycakes

...a song I theorise can be turned into an earworm without any music at all! I am currently in the process of testing this theory.
posted by Sparx at 8:50 PM on August 17 [1 favorite]


I'd say the really interesting part of this post begins with "Now, Nicky Hager has published Dirty Politics...", and urge people to look at that, not just the KDC stuff, because it really exposes some pretty terrible things that are happening here. The Dotcom stuff is interesting mainly for its sheer what-the-fuck?-edness [Not just creating a political party but linking up with a party of grassroots working-class Maori activists and using them as a trojan horse to get your party into Parliament].

Sebmojo: Free education and public health, nuclear-free status, universal welfare and as-of-right superannuation are all locked in; and when the Police did a raid on a literal armed rebellion training camp up in the bush

Well, it could certainly be worse here, and we don't have any Fergusons, and I'll give you nuclear-free and welfare (and add that things like abortion aren't even on the agenda)..... But it's hardly paradise. First-year undergrad courses at Vic are $800-950 each, nearly as much as my entire fees when I studied 20 years ago. (The second year of a 4 year law degree would cost $6000). My GP visits cost me $60. The "literal armed rebellion training camp" went to court and turned out to be a few guys with unauthorised firearms. Here's the leader looking scary. Meanwhile the government's spying on us and engaging in dirty tricks per Hager's book in the OP.
posted by Pink Frost at 9:04 PM on August 17 [6 favorites]


The "literal armed rebellion training camp" went to court and turned out to be a few guys with unauthorised firearms.

To be clear I think it eventually all worked out just about right for all concerned, which would likely (I'm guessing) have not been the case if a similar set of events had eventuated in the US.
posted by Sebmojo at 9:12 PM on August 17 [1 favorite]


...when the Police did a raid on a literal armed rebellion training camp up in the bush a few years back they ended up charging a few people with gun-licensing infringements and apologising en masse to the rest.


This link gives all details, including an iconic photograph of New Zealand's top policeman sharing a cup of tea with one those actually convicted of firearm charges. Both men represent the New Zealand I am so very proud of: and another reason why we don't need a convicted fraudster living here trying to subvert our political processes for his own ends. The sooner we are rid of him, the better.
posted by vac2003 at 9:30 PM on August 17 [3 favorites]


Don't drone me, bro.
posted by univac at 9:31 PM on August 17 [2 favorites]


John Key, Prime Minister, and his right-wing National party have been polling extremely well in their re-election effort.

Oh, FFS, learn from Britain, Australia, and Canada, and don't elect a right-wing asshole into power.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:55 PM on August 17 [3 favorites]


Making attrition.org's charlatan page is a notworthy accomplishment. Most frauds are not worth its attention.
posted by el io at 10:03 PM on August 17


Why have all the "Five Eyes" Anglo-Saxon countries moved so far to the right in the past decade? (... I consider Obama's administration to be center-right)
posted by Auden


Almost enough to make a person wonder whether something's gone wrong with the language itself.
posted by jamjam at 10:22 PM on August 17 [1 favorite]


Do remember that New Zealand's 'centre-right' government is still Albania-style 1980s communism by US standards.

This is why the US is not a good baseline for discussions of political spectrum, especially concerning questions like health care and social welfare, where the US is an outlier among "developed" nations.
posted by chapps at 11:14 PM on August 17 [3 favorites]


I had a look through the internet party candidates and at first glance they seem like earnest sensible types (I could be wrong this is solely based on their platform website). I was not clear why they would join a party founded by Kim Dotcom after reading a bit about him. But I see from Wikipedia the 1st and alternating candidates are from the Mana party with following their merger, which is apparently temporary.
posted by chapps at 11:48 PM on August 17


I was not clear why they would join a party founded by Kim Dotcom after reading a bit about him.

Because he has a lot of money. His $3m donation enables the hard left (Minto, Sykes, Harre) to run a proper campaign for the first time and therefore get into parliament. Without Dotcom's money these guys are basically not electable - Mana was polling at less than one percent before the merger.
posted by dydecker at 12:53 AM on August 18 [1 favorite]


Pink Frost: I'd say the really interesting part of this post begins with "Now, Nicky Hager has published Dirty Politics...", and urge people to look at that, not just the KDC stuff, because it really exposes some pretty terrible things that are happening here.
Yeah. The Guardian article is probably the most revealing profile yet published on KDC. It really is a good piece of journalism, and it's a shame that it had to take a British newspaper to get the story. There just doesn't seem to be the capacity in New Zealand journalism circles to write that kind of article or subject local political figures to that kind of scrutiny.

Or at least that's how it seemed up until 13 August 2014. I quite like Ripper Minnieton's summary (in the other NZ election thread) of what subsequently happened: BOOM. No-one saw that coming: Hager kept the fact he was working on this book completely under wraps. And with each day that goes by, the revelations (and government denials) keep getting more and more extreme. This open thread over at Public Address provides a good indication of how this thing is playing out in real time. Just a week ago, it looked as though National were sleep walking to victory. They may well still do so, but the terrain of the election has been irrevocably altered by Hager's book.
posted by Sonny Jim at 6:23 AM on August 18 [2 favorites]


First-year undergrad courses at Vic are $800-950 each, nearly as much as my entire fees when I studied 20 years ago. (The second year of a 4 year law degree would cost $6000). My GP visits cost me $60.

#kiwiworldproblems
posted by Panjandrum at 6:45 AM on August 18


Things don't have to be America-bad to still be, you know, bad, Panjandrum.
posted by Sonny Jim at 7:03 AM on August 18


He does use 'drone' as a verb
posted by Literaryhero at 9:38 PM on August 17

Someone could update Bob Dylan's anthem "Rainy Day Woman" to modern times:

Well, they'll drone you when you're tryin' to be so good
They'll drone you just like they said they would
They'll drone you when you're tryin' to go home
They'll drone you when you're there all alone
But I would not feel so all alone
Everybody must get droned

etc.
posted by Eekacat at 10:40 AM on August 18 [1 favorite]


Rich man declares revolution to retain the money he made.
posted by Ironmouth at 11:00 AM on August 18


Yeah, they usually don't have to work so hard to retain it.
posted by fullerine at 12:36 PM on August 18


Kim Dotcom is not the hero we want... I'm not at all convinced he's the hero we need... he's just the hero we're stuck with until something better comes along.

Kim Dotplaceholder?
posted by Pudhoho at 10:15 PM on August 18


I'll give you nuclear-free and welfare (and add that things like abortion aren't even on the agenda)

Yeah but abortion still isn't actually legal. And the welfare system is failing more and more people and developing fairly significant holes. As for free, or even free-ish, education, I have a $100,000+ student loan that says otherwise (note: I do not have a law or medical degree, just bad timing).

I'm sort of interested in these new things with the Hager book and all, but not enough to get over being confounded that Kim Dotcom is taken even slightly seriously by literally anyone, not enough to think Labour has their shit together, and not enough to regret not being able to vote this time around.
posted by shelleycat at 11:25 AM on August 19


So I've recently being listening to the Discourse Weekly Show podcast in an effort to brush up my kiwi accent after too much time away (hey guys, if you see lots of downloads from Germany, that's me), and the more links in this post I click, the more I'm looking forward to hearing what they have to say about all this.
posted by shelleycat at 11:34 AM on August 19


Abortion is legal, but it ain't 100% legal. They only want you doing it in certain designated areas, and only if there is a threat to the pregnant womans physical or mental health. So you can say that you couldn't cope with having a child, and your procedure will be rubberstamped.

It is not an issue with any political heat.
posted by WhackyparseThis at 5:51 PM on August 19


Best summary I've seen, once again from The Guardian. This time it's from a New Zealand journalist, at least.
posted by dimejubes at 9:17 PM on August 22 [2 favorites]


Braunias on Greenwald.
posted by Sebmojo at 11:37 AM on September 14


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