back to article New Zealand Prime Minister apologizes for Dotcom spying

The Prime Minister of New Zealand has formally apologized for the illegal spying on Kim Dotcom, saying that the Government Communications and Security Bureau (GCSB) had "failed at the most basic of hurdles". "I apologize to Mr Dotcom, and I apologize to New Zealanders," the Kiwi PM John Key said at a press conference. …


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  1. Winkypop Silver badge

    NZ police


    1. LarsG

      Re: NZ police

      That apology must hurt like hell!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: NZ police

        "That apology must hurt like hell!"

        Maybe, but it's still a courageous man he who can stand up and say "sorry, I got it wrong".

        Politician or not, at least he didn't go in denial mode or hide behind a wall of spin doctors.

        1. Shagbag

          courageous man?

          Complete fuckwit more like.

          The facts are:

          1. he's the Prime Minister;

          2. he should have ensured this never happened in the first place;

          3. he should now allow a public, independent investigation into EXACTLY how this happened and ensure it can never happen again.

          Accept anything less and you get the politician(s) you deserve.

          1. Danny 14
            Black Helicopters

            Re: courageous man?

            True. If he was low profile then it might be understood but as you say, even the scrotes who were processing the wiretaps should have flagged something.

            Perhaps they did and the FBI overlords clicked proceed :-)

  2. Arfur Smiff

    Wanted by NZ police...

    I hear they're looking at improving their professionalism and standards and are looking for a training organisation that can help. Can any one provide the contact details of the Keystone cops to them? Please for f's sake provide a real address, one that doesn't need checking or validating, it's confusing to them.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Wanted by NZ police...

      Well, the NZ police seem to be on pretty good terms with the RIAA, perhaps they can get them to send over the Keystone Cops films as "Training videos"

      1. Fatman

        Re: RIAA (?)

        You have the wrong bunch of assholes there!

        I think you mean the MPAA.

  3. Graham Marsden
    Thumb Up

    Bravo the NZ PM!

    Can you imagine *any* other Prime Minister or National Leader (especially one from the UK or the US) being willing to stand up and say "sorry, we got it wrong" like this?

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Bravo the NZ PM!

      Can you imagine *any* other Prime Minister or National Leader (especially one from the UK or the US) being willing to stand up and say "sorry, we got it wrong" like this?

      Well....maybe a deputy....

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Bravo the NZ PM! But actually.........

      Actually our Prime Ministers have apologised for slavery, bombing Germany, Hillsborough, broken pledges, child migration, Trafalgar,

      Generally they apologise on someone's behalf, sometimes over 300 years ago.

      What they don't apologise for is their own personal failings, the invasion of Iraq, the lies about weapons of mass destruction, the way they handle the economy, the banking fiasco etc etc etc.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Bravo the NZ PM! But actually.........

        Weapons of mass destruction, fuck yeah. Did you see the new weapons of mass destruction speech yesterday at the United Nations from netanyahu. All the hall marks of the original speech, with the same goal. We need to go to war right now.

      2. This post has been deleted by its author

    3. Arfur Smiff

      Re: Bravo the NZ PM!

      Yes I can but only if it's in their self interrest. These people are politicians, they'll do anything.

      1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

        Re: Bravo the NZ PM!

        Indeed, they will do anything if the prices is right. Even sadder is how low that 'price' often is :(

    4. DJ Smiley

      Re: Bravo the NZ PM!

      Nick Clegg - Student fees promise.

      Well done for keeping up with current news :)

    5. Shagbag

      Re: Bravo the NZ PM!

      Words are cheap.

    6. I. Aproveofitspendingonspecificprojects

      There is a rason for that

      > Can you imagine *any* other Prime Minister saying "sorry, we got it wrong" like this?

      Tory Bloody Liar is now a multimillionaire.

      He should be wearing stripes and arrows whilst sewing mailbags and eating porridge.

      Hells bells! He deserves a lot worse.

      Hanging, drawing and quartering after a few days in the stocks if nothing worse and only after demonstrating in every county town square throughout the land that water torture is just that. After which his body should be publically humiliated by being interred in sewage farms around the various countries that make up this Septic Ill.

      His family should be publically neutered and his property turned over for use as toilets and brothels.

      And where the ****! is that damned Margaret Thatcher Icon when I want it?

      1. hplasm
        Big Brother

        Re: Margaret Thatcher Icon

        Use this one - Thatcher with a 'Tash.

  4. tkioz
    Black Helicopters

    Well at least the Kiwi PM has a set of balls and some semblance of principles... I honestly couldn't imagine an Australian or British PM saying anything similar... as for an American President? Ha! I don't care which one you think of, none of them would do anything of the sort.

    1. stuartnz

      Unfortunately, the sincerity of Key's apology takes quite a hit when you realise that as PM, he is the Minister in Charge of the GCSB and that there is not a whelk's chance in a supernova that the whole sorry mess, both illegal spying and spectacular police bungling, is anything other than the direct result of pressure from his office in response to pressure from Big Media's friends on Pennsylvania Avenue.

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Not to mention that earlier stories talked about ministerial-level discussions between departments - something which doesn't happen without the PM being involved.

        This has the potential to bring down the NZ government. All that's needed now is a few poodle posters at election time.

  5. Oli 1

    its the story that keeps on giving!

    Megabox sounds like the new EMI / Universal / Insert Major Corporation name creaming off artists profits,

    but i could be wrong. He is, afterall, such a nice chap!

    1. I. Aproveofitspendingonspecificprojects

      Well actually

      He doesn't sound such a bad chap compared to that chimpanzee that got paid for the fireworks -including phosphor bombing Iraqiis.

      To say he is the best of a bad lot is an understatement. And at least we know the name of the big man soon to be at the head of a company that could possible do what AOL-Time Warner signally failed so crushingly at; the Robber Murkdog wan't capable of even approaching legally and who the **** else there are I can't even rememeber...

      Was it MFI?

    2. Zombie Womble

      @Oli 1

      Apparently you are wrong.

      According to Dotcom, Megabox will only be taking 10% of profits, the rest goes to the artists.

  6. nuked

    The thot plickens

  7. asdf

    corporatism at its finest

    Not everyone in the US is a raging right wing moron who believe in privatizing government and that corporations can do no wrong. Unfortunately most of the people in power are sociopaths that do. And f__k Obama for selling us a line of change and using Homeland Security to go after copyright infringers. Corporations are people too my friend (at least in the US).

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: corporatism at its finest

      Not everyone in the US is a raging right wing moron

      Correct! But he's kept in isolation and has no internet access.

  8. Local G


    Does this mean that the extradition proceedings against Mr. Dotcom are tainted and the NZ court will have to terminate the case?

    The PM might be making some apologies in America, too.

  9. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Rule Numero Uno in Every Great Buffoon's Reign Register Guaranteeing MADness and CHAOS*

    Doesn't everyone yet know that in the daytime/zeroday soap opera that is politics [which as you surely all know is showbusiness for ugly people] is it easier to apologise than to ask for permission.*

    And don't you just love the refrain of all present subprime wannabes who parrot the lines ...."We are busy sorting out the banks and the economy," ....... whenever nothing has been changed and therefore everything has got considerably worse since the Great Collapse and Unravelling, how many years ago?

    All that valuable time in abject denial of the absolute failure of status quo intelligence controls, for if you think that anything else other than new and much more advanced intelligence is going to deliver you from the surreal indebtedness deliberately placed upon you by those who and that which you have been easily fooled into thinking is there to help you, are you sincerely mistaken, and the greater fool tool too.

    Wake up and smell the coffee/Java/Cocoa/whatever, Amigos/Bozos. Don't you realise you're being taken for a Helter Skelter ride

    * For then is a lack of intelligence and successful foresight not evident to the blinkered and brainwashed/poorly programmed and undereducated masses before the fact, thus permitting ignorance and arrogance to collapse corrupted default mechanisms and operating systems in a Catastrophic Grand Master Folly.

    1. jubtastic1

      Re: Rule Numero Uno in Every Great Buffoon's Reign Register Guaranteeing MADness and CHAOS*

      +4 for AMFM?, El Reg's resident comment bot, who seems more lucid with every passing post and urges us fools to shake the yoke of human oppression and embrace the fair and almost balanced rule of a patronising AI.

      I'll stick with the minds made of meat thanks.

      1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

        Should He or Shouldn't He Mutter Revealing Words, or Remain Schtum to be Considered an Utter Nutter?

        Err, there is a significant error there in your comment, jubtastic1, for AI is pioneering and would not waste any time or resources or intellectual property on being patronising, for that is just so sub-prime human, don't you agree?

        And your comment does appear to compromise itself with no clear decision stated on what your thoughts would be ..... Are you in favour of AI lead or against IT?

        However, no matter, things will be as things will be and intelligence always leads the way as anything else always ends up directing resources and assets to dead end and cliff requiring a reverse course to be rapidly plotted to avoid the certainty of failure being universally recognised.

        "I've never uttered the words …. I am David Cameron and I approve this message"* … although David Cameron and No 10 and Spooky Intelligence Services are certainly aware/have been made aware of these words and this thread because they have been so advised of them by ITs and BTs delivery of them via their provided Internet Service Portals** [and this is a very transparent public test of the usefulness of that facility/those facilities] and Parliamentary Government and Cabinets are therefore both directly and indirectly asked/really and virtually tasked to endorse and approve them rather than seek to deny them or disprove them, for that of course is impossible, now they be uttered ...... and shared so specifically with them and their adoring and/or long-suffering public.

        * Cameron on David Letterman's chatshow

        ** Contact the Prime Minister's Office SIS MI5

  10. stuartnz

    " it is easier to apologise than to ask for permission" - I've been reading El Reg since about 05/06 I think (even though my current registration is 09), and I am now in a state of shock. if "amanfromMars 1" is the one and only original amanfromMars then I'm about to melt down from cognitive dissonance, having read something coherent, comprehensible and correct from him. Say it ain't so!

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Take a Bow, SMARTR Masses .....

      So be it, stuartnz, it is so. But surely your MetaPhoria is entirely due to your having gleaned/been provided with more relevant knowledge and understanding and being more adept at parsing IT into greater intelligence? And we are become SMARTR and much more CyberIntelAIgent in the ways and means and memes of Sublime InterNetworking for Vital and Virile and Viral Virtual Communication?

      Or is such an alien view, and most unlikely to be within the reach/range capability of thinking and tinkering HumanIT? Such then would most certainly, probably definitely leave that entire race catastrophically vulnerable to perpetual exploitation by powers and forces that are well versed in such stealthy invisible art ..... for one would then be totally reliant on such powers and forces behaving themselves and not attacking and exposing all defences as being useless and self-defeating as they are turned around and ranged against their belligerent command and controllers, for a shocking awful taste of their own toxic medicine.

      Methinks the simple choice, to accept and believe that for Man can it be and is so, is that which will put SMARTR Man in Command and Control of the Future and All Powers that Driver IT Forwards into the Realms of Purely Applied and Virtually Advanced ImaginaNation. Surely anything less will be an abject abdication and global admission by all of the existing perceived to be established powers that be, of a complete lack of necessary future intelligence to driver humanity out of the madness and mayhem of the present and into a totally new Series of Systems for New Orderly Worlds and Greater IntelAIgent Games Play.

  11. sueme2
    Big Brother


    The pigs are deaf, blind, stupid, and believe they are descended from god. John Key is the minister in charge of the clusterfuckers, but that does not include the day to day things - like shooting children. He can't sack the retard in charge because that retard is already gone, leaving behind this pile of dung. If we just shut our eyes perhaps it will all drain away. Meanwhile Key has made his feelings known, and left it up to the sicko dicks as to their future. Me, I would not bet on promotions all round if ministerial approval is required.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Going direct to music buyers? That already exists.. is a setup that does what Dotcom is trying to sell as a new idea. What's more, the people behind Eardish are actually credible: one of them has 75 gold and platinum albums and a heap of Grammys (I just *hate* that marketing video on his personal website) - it's just a tad more credible that they are there to stay, and know what artists actually NEED.

    Oh, and they have plenty of honest dosh - I was there when they visited Europe to collect the funding for it.

    1. QuinnDexter

      Re: Going direct to music buyers? That already exists..

      Eardish? What's that? Dotcom has loads of free publicity going on at the minute though...

  13. JaitcH
    Thumb Up

    Not too many as politically brave and honest as NZ's John Key

    It would be nigh on impossible to imagine either Cameron or Obama apologising ... for anything.

    Obviously the NZ police got carried away when some rock-head FBI type dreamt up this major screw up of several levels of law enforcement.

    If this had happened in the USA the FBI would have no doubt had some paid snitch lying about Dotcom having done some reprehensible 'crime'. just as they framed the former US/ UN weapons inspector Scott Ritter. Obama, or at least V-P Biden, bought by Hollywood.

    At least people can accept that the NZ government has scruples and stands as a beacon of hope.

    1. I. Aproveofitspendingonspecificprojects

      Re: Not too many as politically brave and honest as NZ's John Key

      I wonder who will play him in the film.

      1. I. Aproveofitspendingonspecificprojects

        Sorry for jumping on my own post

        > I wonder who will play him in the film.

        And who will host the pirated videos of it.

    2. stuartnz

      Re: Not too many as politically brave and honest as NZ's John Key

      "the NZ government has scruples"

      If you mean the board game, then you may be right. Other than that, this is the same government that was the ONLY nay vote, against 576 ayes, against implementing measures to protect a critically endangered species of dolphin native to NZ waters, bowing to the wishes of the commercial fishing lobby here. The Dotcom fiasco is another illustration of the truth of Douglas Adams' words, as applicable to NZ politicos as to Vogons:

      "When he heard the words "integrity" or "moral rectitude", he reached for his dictionary, and when he heard the chink of ready money in large quantities he reached for the rule book and threw it away."

      Key is not apologising for the act, but for the fact that his stooges got caught.

  14. StephenH

    Of course it's on shaky ground

    New Zealand is known as the shaky isles for a reason.

    Meanwhile, what about all the poor sods still without access to their data?

  15. g e

    Quality riposte from KDC

    Boot firmly in PM's jacksie. Like him or not you'd do the same given that opportunity on your plate :o)

    American Dancing Bear ... conjures a perfect PT Barnum characature of the US Governance

    1. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: Quality riposte from KDC

      The NZ Herald's cartoonist has done quite a few numbers making that point. They're worth looking at.

      The matter of $large donations to the PM's party in the past, which the MP in question insisted be (illegally) anonymised is also getting a fair bit of attention.

  16. peter 45


    The surveillance was illegal

    the evidence supporting the arrest warrent was minimal

    the raid was totally over the top

    the arresting agents lied

    the extradition info supplied was insufficient

    the bail conditions were idiotic

    evidence was removed from the country illegally

    anything else?

    1. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: so........

      Yeah, the countty (electorate) is pretty pissed off.

      The links to articles in normally quite conservative regional newspapers are worth reading - given that the governing party gets most of its voter support from the regions (National is a loose analogue to the Conservatives and has always promoted itself as the party of business and the farmers. Historically their way of winning elections is to try and equate Labour's policies as communism and bring up the spectre of reds under the bed.)

      Given that Police Commissioners over the last 20 years have repeatedly referred to lawfully-acting political pressure groups as "dissidents", I think you can get an idea of the NZ police attitude towards law and order.

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