Note: We here at LF wrote the piece below a few days shy of 12 months ago (July 27th 2012) and we’re now republishing the article.
Its a story of past whistleblowers who have in the wake of the “Edward Snowden affair” become even more relevant. We do, however, have another in-depth investigative article coming. A piece far more specific to the Edward Snowden case, which we are currently researching for our readers to enjoy and more importantly act on – its coming very soon.
So the past story starts:
Lauda Finem have noticed that in a number of recent New Zealand cases prosecutors, police and those with a vested interest have been utilising some very old methods (which historically have been reserved for dealing with whistle-blowers and the political fallout created by the truth being made public) to vilify some individuals.
One such case is to be found in the Kim Dotcom extradition trial. Yesterday the New Zealand Herald (NZH) ran a piece which focused on comments made by the Hollywood studio’s (MPAA) attorney Mr Marc Miller (formally of Nintendo Corporation).
The peice, written by the Sunday Heralds David Fisher, entitled “Hollywood: Dotcom a ‘career crim'” reports an attempt by this so-called lawyer to vilify Dotcom; by labeling him a “career criminal”.
What Mr Marc Miller, solicitor, may not know is that to a reasonable person a “career criminal”, at least in this part of the world, is some one that has spent a considerable time in prison…….Kim Dotcom hasn’t…… of course we’re not counting the time spent in Mt Eden following Mr Millers Hollywood mates bogus charges.
In Dotcoms case the past offending was minor and may well have been of a technical nature, so for Mr Miller to call him a career crim is a pure fabrication.
For this reason alone this septic, Mr Marc Miller, appears to be more focused on advancing his own career and pay packet, by using a ploy that we Australian’s would normally attribute to a “corrupt bastard”; which is of course a far more sinister form of “career criminal” offending. We think that Mr Marc Miller might just have walked onto a very slippery slope; its called contempt of court.
Whilst this sort of behaviour may be acceptable in the United States of America its far from the case in British based common law jurisdictions or in fact European constitutional/civil law jurisdictions.
Had Dotcom’s alleged past offences been in New Zealand then it would have been covered by the Criminal Records (Clean Slate) Act 2004, indeed as it is, under similar legislation, in Germany. As such Mr Marc Miller would have himself been committing a criminal offence offense under Section 17 of the aforementioned New Zealand law. With this in mind we would like to point Mr Miller to comments attributed to New Zealand’s Prime Minister John Key:
However, he [John Key] said immigration authorities took into account the wiping of Dotcom’s criminal record under Germany’s ‘clean-slate’ laws.
“The New Zealand officials contacted the German police. They confirmed that was the situation, that they had no further concerns and so, on that basis, they made the call to grant him residency. That’s not unusual,” Key said on TVNZ.
In fact even prior to this “clean slate” legislation passing into law, both in New Zealand and Germany, there was a New Zealand legal authority that required individuals and the media to be very cautious in and around criminal proceedings, that case, [Gisborne Herald Co Ltd v Solicitor-General  3 NZLR 563, 569 CA].
The Dotcom case is however unique in that a number of jurisdictions are involved and this low rent american lawyer, Mr Miller, obviously feels very secure in spitting venom from the comfort of his “foreign jurisdiction” home in Los Angeles, USA.
Nevertheless, what really interests us is the fact that this bastards behaviour is obviously a classic case of vilification and a clear attempt at prosecutorial abuse; designed to poison American public opinion.
In his work Mr Martin explores the many techniques used by those in power when attempting to mitigate political fallout after the exposure of corruption and or wrong doing by Whistle-blowers.
These same issues are also dealt with in a very interesting three part SBS documentary “Law and disorder”.
This Television series focuses on a number of well known Australian whistle-blowers, the likes of ex intelligence officer Andrew Wilkie, and their personal experiences with those individuals inhabiting the corridors of power and extraordinary lengths they will go to in their attempts to destroy the credibility and lives of those who dare to speak out.
So just what is it that those in authority have in their arsenal and are only too willing to use when threatened by whistle-blowers and or the possibility that their corrupt ways are about to be (or have been) exposed.
In a recent report on the media and corruption here in Australia, the reports author, retired Justice Raymond Finklestein, refers to just one of these weapons, at par 11.10 , in a chapter titled “Reform” Finkelstein accurately observes and concludes:
“the news media can cause wrongful harm to individuals and organisations by unreliable or inaccurate reporting, breach of privacy, and the failure to properly take into account the defenceless in the community”.
The Australasian media have always been obliging when it comes to participating in the process of vilification, of course they need to sell newspapers, but over the past two decades (undoubtedly influenced by Rupert Murdoch’s press behemoth) their emphasis has not been on establishing the truth or investigating what has actually occurred. As such they have become very much part of the political establishments Posse comitatus; a party political lynch mob that has been sent out to hunt down opponents, by attempting to sway a naive public’s opinion.
One very good example of our argument is the case of Andrew Wilkie the man who blew the whistle on John Howard and his Liberal government for having taken Australia to war using the spurious reasoning that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction (WoMD).
When Mr Wilkie exposed this now obvious fraud he was completely pilloried using the media (in particular Murdoch’s Australian), with allegations of mental illness and marital problems….all of it untrue.
In a case closer to home for our New Zealand readers, especially the victims of collapsed finance company F & I, local Justice campaigner Dermot Nottingham and investor Peter Mytton were pilloried by New Zealand’s media for having produced an investigative report that exposed serious wrong doing on the part of F & I directors, and a host of co-conspirators
Like the Australian Wilkie case, wherein he went on to become an independent member of the Australian Parliament the attempt to fuck over Nottingham and Mytton also seriously backfired resulting in the publisher, Fairfax, paying Mr Nottingham compensation for the defamation and forced to print the inevitable retraction and apology.
Whilst these two examples prove that those who wield power are not invincible and that their attempts to discredit, so as to conceal corruption can seriously backfire this is not often the case. Most people when confronted with the political might of Government or any other cashed up entity, such as the Hollywood tycoons behind the Dotcom fiasco, tend to crash and burn.
The average person tends to stumble into the position of being a whistle-blower or the victim of misfeasance and as such are often ill-equipped to deal with the onslaught brought to bare by a powerful wrong doer, be it a government, police force, private corporation or as in the Kim Dotcom’s case all fucking three.
As Prof Brian Martin points out in his aforementioned hand book:
One of the biggest mistakes of those who discover problems (corruption) is to trust that others will
also be concerned and take action. Many whistleblowers, burned by their experiences,
say that they were naive. They trusted. They trusted that management would act. They
trusted that co-workers would support them.
They trusted that the union would back them. They trusted that government agencies and the
courts would work to ensure justice. Sometimes this trust is warranted, but all
too often it is not. Cynical workers don’t act because they assume management knows
about and tolerates the problem and that if they do anything about it they will suffer
The Bronwyn Pullar debacle is yet another classic example of how powerful men and women will stoup to extraordinary lows to destroy the credibility of those that pose a threat, Pullar was also labelled a “criminal” for her whistle-blowing efforts, fortunately she had a tape that proved her right and embarrassed the government.
In fact in Pullar’s case New Zealand National Business Review and one of its prize media whores, Jock Anderson, is still at it with his latest muck-racking effort “Money, mayhem and murder: How Pullar tried to get $14 million compo”.
Jock “the Cock” Anderson is of course better known here in Australia for his slanderous attack on our diggers (“SHOCK JOCK ANDERSON, liar, defamer, a disgracefull coward”), but we digress.
Unfortunately all to often when honest, albeit naive, people are confronted with this apparent apathy or more importantly the sculdugery of those in power who on occasion deliberately set out to destroy the credibility of the whistleblower or victim of misfeasance using the media, it inevitably results in crash and burn; the objective of the cashed up aggressor.
Whilst they have undoubtedly experienced the suffering that this type of malfeasance brings many (such as Federal MP Andrew Wilkie) go on to use their personal, somewhat indelible, experience and hyper-vigilance in fighting battles for others who find themselves in the same position and eventually bares the most remarkable fruit…….they become a catalyst for change and a political force to be reckoned with.
In the Dotcom case there are a number of unusual factors in play, not the least of which is the fact that the man at the centre of it all has surrounded himself with others who have first hand experience of the tactics employed by those who abuse power for their own nefarious political or corporate objectives. In fact Kim Dotcom is acting in a manner that could suggest that he has in fact read “The whistle-blowers handbook”.
As Prof Brian Martin also points out in his work:
If truth was enough by itself, it shouldn’t be necessary to build support. It would simply
be enough to speak the truth. This is a serious mistake. To have some chance of success, it is
vital to have supporters. This often requires a patient effort to find out where people stand
and then to mobilise those who are sympathetic, win over some of those who are neutral
and to reduce the hostility of some of the opponents. It’s not enough to be correct and
to be serving the public interest.
Dotcom, fortunately, has had a number of experienced New Zealander’s come to his aid (not everyone’s a dumb-fuck), and has wisely started to recruit more supporters using an internet campaign (see http://kim.com) and public meetings where he has been able to put his side of the story into the public domain…..and its not looking good for our American friends at the FBI
The media will of course mock this activity. After all, as has already been pointed out (by none other than a retired and highly respected judge of the Australian High Court), the media (more especially in New Zealand from what we have observed), tend to side with those in power in these cases, lest they loose access to the power-brokers and the all important future stories vital to maintaining their circulation and advertising revenue.
There is a little irony in the fact that this is where the internet, orthodox media, the truth and those with a vested interest in concealing it so as to maintain the status quo inevitably collide. As one fairly well known Australian marketing guru is fond of saying;
“the internet is the ultimate truth serum”
The internet is also fast becoming a serum that is effective in slowly defeating anything bent; injustice, corruption and political spin machines all over the globe are under attack. Abuse’s that those with vested interests, those who cling to power in whatever form, have for many many decades managed to conceal…..but no longer
In our opinion the Dotcom fiasco was designed by those with money and political connections to set a precedent, the side effects of which, if successful, are unimaginable. The only possible reason Dotcom was picked as a target is likely because of his isolation, the relatively small manpower he employed and likely the fact the fact that the yanks knew they would not be accountable for their corrupt behavior whilst operating off shore. That and the fact that the New Zealand police obviously had some form of Penis envy when it came to the yanks and their FBI. The Rambo style raid on Dotcom’s home complete with the Hollywood scripted black helicopters was outrageous, totally unnecessary and a gross waste of tax payers funds, clearly their only intention was to show off. Unfortunately it just made these south pacific “keystone cops” an international laughing stock. Whats not funny however is the fact that this corruption is having a devastating impact on the lives of real people who had no intention of playing the lead in this Hollywood scripted epic.
Given that Megaupload appears to have been amongst the cleanest players in the industry there can be no other explanation:
“Reuters reported that Megaupload was actually among the more law-compliant of the major sites that allegedly facilitated piracy, citing a memo penned for the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry.”
This is a test case in more ways than one, perhaps even those responsible in Hollywood may not have foreseen the fallout. It has brought together four very separate arms of society all of which are normally required to be quite separate, but who have on this occasion set a dangerous precedent by joining forces to become a cabal; responsible for seriously corrupt behavior, the illegal search warrants are but the tip of the iceberg, Government, Law enforcement, the Courts and big business.
We here at Lauda Finem would urge all New Zealander’s to stand up and be counted, whistle-blowers, justice crusaders, activists, or for that matter those who stand accused should NEVER be vilified, be mindful of this simple tenet, the foundation our Westminster system of justice and for very good reason;
If you see it in any other way then something is seriously wrong:
First they came for the communists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a Jew.
Then they came for me
and there was no one left to speak out for me.
- Kim Dotcom plans to release NSA-proof email, messaging for Mega users (bgr.com)
- Kim Dotcom warns of the coming ‘dark ages’ of US spying (vr-zone.com)
- PM faces confrontation with Kim Dotcom (radionz.co.nz)
- Kim Dotcom Attacks New Zealand Prime Minister, Spy Agency at Committee Meeting (hngn.com)
- Dotcom face to face with Key (stuff.co.nz)
- NZ Prime Minister vs Kim Dotcom, who you got? (kitguru.net)
- Kim Dotcom attacks New Zealand spy agency (metronews.ca)
- Spy bill unjustified, Dotcom tells PM (radionz.co.nz)
- Kim Dotcom arrives for GCSB hearing (stuff.co.nz)