Friday, September 27, 2013

New Zealand: Kim Dotcom V The PM, Police, GCSB, and now Oracle.

The New Zealand Herald reports

Dotcom: I'll fund Team NZ's next America's Cup bid

                                                                                              Kim Dotcom

Internet millionaire Kim Dotcom has vowed to help fund Team New Zealand's next America's Cup campaign.

I have a certain respect for Dotcom, or more accurately I have very little respect for certain New Zealand ( NZ ) government agencies. John Key and his National Party mates have defended the indefensible when it comes to Dotcoms treatment by various arms of the NZ state. 

Dotcom the founder of file-sharing site Megaupload, who has been charged with various copyright infringements by the US Government and is now fighting his extradition, was arrested in a police operation on his Coatesville mansion in January last year.
The raid has since been deemed illegal by the High Court, when Justice Winkelmann ruled the warrants authorising it were too general.
The New Zealand Government clearly broke the law. During the 1980's NZ developed an independent world view and pretty much told America to either get over it or fuck off, they chose the latter. We abandoned that policy and climbed back into bed with America with the election of the John Key National government 5 years ago and now are the USA's South Pacific Office as well as the laughing stock of the world.

The new images clearly show armed police arriving at the mansion, where they climb fences and arrest a guard at the gate. They then enter the house with guns and dogs, while more officers arrive in helicopters.
Other shots show Dotcom’s cars being towed from the property.
Previous footage of the raid gathered by police was released in court in August last year. It showed two helicopters landed in quick succession in the mansion’s courtyard.
Five armed men exited each helicopter and then three vans and a car quickly arrived with more armed men, some with dogs.
                           The New Zealand police being dickheads while trying to effect the illegal arrest of Dotcom
This is New Zealand, most of us don't have guns and I haven't seen a gun in this country tor years unlike Europe where they are common place and still give me a shock when I see them there. Can you possibly imagine just how over the top this behaviour was by our authorities ? 

The officers, from the elite police Special Tactics Group, entered the mansion and went upstairs to Dotcom’s bedroom.
On finding it empty, police used sledgehammers and a mechanical saw to breach the walls of a dumb-waiter, where they wrongly suspected Dotcom was hiding.

You don't need a hell of a lot of education to become a cop in New Zealand and really some of the decisions made here would have been better made by the above mentioned dumb-waiter.

He was eventually located, with the help of bodyguard Wayne Tempero, in a safe room. While arresting Dotcom, police said they stood on his hand.
Dotcom also accused police of kicking and punching him during the raids. They have denied these allegations.

I believe Dotcom. I also think the FBI should be put on trial in New Zealand for their role in this farce. The FBI may be prepared to jump when hollywood gets worried about internet piracy but I am stuffed if I can see any reason why we should do their bidding in what in my view is essentially a civil lawsuit. 
That said I love yachting and it doesn't get any better than the Americas cup.

The team's future hangs in the balance after Oracle Team USA retained the Cup in San Francisco yesterday, with boss Grant Dalton's position uncertain and the Government yet to confirm whether it would fund another tilt.
The Government stumped up $36 million for the latest campaign, but Prime Minister John Key yesterday said decisions were yet to be made about whether it would help again.
However, he indicated it was likely, and hoped to discuss whether another campaign was possible.

From an investment point of view I think it is probably worth the NZ Government throwing some taxpayer dollars at this. Had we won on Thursday we would have realised that investment many times over as it stands losing 9-8 to Oracle demonstrates just how good we are at the high tech stuff and it should be remembered Oracle's boat was also made in New Zealand. The Americas cup is not only a sport's event it is a technology event and from the perspective of nations NZ is the only country in the game. We just about about bet the billionaires and that makes Team New Zealand a very valuable entity.  

" Before the competition began last Saturday, cup defenders Oracle Team USA had already been penalized by the international sailing body for weighting their boat with “too much money.” Under the federation’s rules, competitors are allowed to strap a maximum of $15 million cash to each individual part of their boat."

Internet entrepreneur Dotcom, whose relationship with Mr Key has been tense since the GCSB spying revelations, today said he would back Team NZ if the Government did not.
The Mega founder said on Twitter: "Prime Minister John Key says no more funding for Team NZ? I say #Mega will become a Team NZ sponsor & we will win next time. #AmericasCup."

There is no love lost between the NZ Prime Minister and Kim Dotcom. Again we have the embarrassment of the NZ government getting caught behaving illegally. 

The Prime Minister has suggested that the GCSB should be able to spy on New Zealanders if it has the right oversight.

The bureau is prohibited by law from spying on New Zealand citizens or permanent residents.

John Key has confirmed that some of the people who were the subject of legally questionable GCSB operations were New Zealanders or New Zealand residents.

Dotcom told One News he would pump millions into the campaign regardless of the Government's contribution.
He had not discussed it with Team NZ but said there was no better brand to be associated with, and he liked the idea with going up against another technology entrepreneur, Oracle boss Larry Ellison.

Lets get the money out of him pronto because if the Americans get their hands on him they will take the lot. That said I think it might be time to give America the one finger salute over Dotcom, he has demonstrated a commitment to New Zealand, sure he has had a a bit of a dodgy past but I think in the grand scheme of things he might well be more sinned against than sinner. Apologise for his lousy treatment by our government give him citizenship and spend his money building a boat that can go one step further than we did in this edition of the Americas Cup.

Dotcom told One News he was impressed with the team's skill and like most New Zealanders he had been glued to the racing for the last fortnight.
The German national is facing extradition to the United States on internet piracy charges relating to his recently rebooted Mega internet service.

The next few weeks will be interesting but I hope Team New Zealand survives.

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