Steven Price

My book

Media Minefield


Guide to NZ Media Law

Official Information Act

Official Information Act


Bill of Rights Act

Media law resources

Feeds (RSS)


« | Main | »

Some questions for the PM

By Steven | September 15, 2014

I’m struggling to find the provisions in NZ’s policy about the classification of documents that allow the PM to declassify documents for the purpose of protecting his reputation (his word, not mine, on Morning Report this morning). Perhaps the PM could help me out here.

The PM has said he would declassify documents to prove he stopped a mass surveillance proposal, in response to criticisms by journalist Glenn Greenwald (and, it seems, whistleblower Edward Snowden).

A few other questions spring to mind:

Why were these documents classified in the first place, and who by? What was the security classification?

If they were classified secret or top secret, what was the “serious” or “exceptionally grave” damage to our security operations that would have been caused if we’d known about them, say, at the time we were debating the proper content of our spy laws? (Or what other secrecy ground was relied on?).

Who is directing the reclassification? Because it sounds like the PM is ordering it. But the decision should surely be made by the intelligence agencies themselves. Chapter 3, para 31 says:

for authority to downgrade or declassify, refer material classified SECRET or TOP SECRET to the point of origin.

So what’s the PM doing making this call? Hasn’t he always told us that operational decisions are the domain of the agencies themselves? (And isn’t his office under investigation for rapidly having SIS information declassified and released to Cameron Slater?)

If the PM is making this decision, is protecting his own reputation a proper consideration?

One might have thought that “overriding public interest” was the proper benchmark for working out whether to declassify a document. That has the beauty of being consistent with the Official Information Act, which still applies to these documents (see Chapter 3, para 6). And surely there is overriding public interest in the release of the documents now. Is the PM reluctant to make this point because of the obvious rejoinder: why were they not in the public interest back when we were debating the law, when similar allegations of mass surveillance by our spy agencies were being made, and when the country was debating what powers and limitations on those powers were appropriate?

Is this declassification process being expedited? Again, on whose instructions?

Or was it already in train? It was widely anticipated that Nicky Hager’s book would include similar allegations to these. Had the PM already begun or even finished the declassification process in order to have the documents lined up for rebuttal?

Why are the only documents being declassified the ones necessary to protect the PM’s reputation by showing how he stopped this “business plan”? If those documents are no longer going to be harmful to release, or if there is sufficient public interest to override any relevant harm, then aren’t there a swag of other relevant documents that should be declassified too?

Topics: General | 29 Comments »

29 Responses to “Some questions for the PM”

  1. online hash bestellen Says:
    October 12th, 2017 at 7:20 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More here|Read More|Read More Infos here|There you can find 52645 additional Infos|Informations on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  2. creative photography Says:
    October 25th, 2017 at 7:30 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More here|Find More|Find More Infos here|Here you can find 94269 additional Infos|Infos on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  3. roof repair Says:
    November 2nd, 2017 at 10:05 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More on|Find More|Read More Informations here|Here you can find 71021 more Informations|Infos on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  4. Scr888 Register Says:
    November 8th, 2017 at 3:35 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More here|Read More|Read More Informations here|Here you will find 79781 additional Informations|Informations on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  5. Wedding Organizers in LB Nagar Hyderabad Says:
    November 20th, 2017 at 1:48 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More here|Read More|Find More Infos here|There you will find 52244 more Infos|Informations on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  6. make money with a iphone Says:
    November 25th, 2017 at 8:32 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More here|Find More|Read More Infos here|There you will find 43768 more Infos|Infos to that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  7. DMPK Says:
    December 1st, 2017 at 11:53 pm

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More here|Find More|Read More Informations here|Here you can find 35067 more Informations|Infos to that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  8. كلية التربية للعلوم الانسانية ديالى Says:
    December 18th, 2017 at 9:28 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More here|Read More|Find More Informations here|There you will find 19836 additional Informations|Infos to that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  9. In Vitro ADME Assays Says:
    December 18th, 2017 at 11:37 pm

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More on|Find More|Find More Informations here|There you will find 56133 additional Informations|Informations on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  10. GVK BIO germany Says:
    December 31st, 2017 at 3:00 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More here|Find More|Read More Infos here|There you will find 75842 more Infos|Informations on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  11. Drug Metabolism and Pharmacokinetics Says:
    January 4th, 2018 at 3:05 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More here|Read More|Read More Infos here|Here you can find 69640 more Infos|Informations on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  12. local real estate agents Says:
    January 10th, 2018 at 12:36 pm

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More here|Find More|Read More Infos here|There you will find 76294 more Infos|Informations on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  13. horoscope Says:
    January 10th, 2018 at 2:42 pm

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More on|Read More|Read More Informations here|Here you will find 61241 additional Informations|Informations on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  14. GVK BIO Latest News Says:
    January 20th, 2018 at 3:00 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More here|Read More|Read More Infos here|There you will find 52261 more Infos|Infos on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  15. http://www.guaranteedppc.com Says:
    February 4th, 2018 at 3:38 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More on|Read More|Read More Informations here|Here you can find 29383 more Informations|Infos to that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  16. warehouse for sale Says:
    February 6th, 2018 at 12:32 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More on|Read More|Read More Informations here|There you can find 31171 more Informations|Informations to that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  17. http://www.guaranteedppc.com Says:
    February 8th, 2018 at 9:30 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More here|Find More|Read More Informations here|There you will find 32530 more Informations|Informations to that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  18. 먹튀신고 Says:
    February 23rd, 2018 at 1:02 pm

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More here|Find More|Find More Infos here|There you will find 23802 more Infos|Infos to that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  19. page111 Says:
    March 17th, 2018 at 1:50 pm

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More here|Find More|Find More Informations here|There you can find 88823 more Informations|Informations on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  20. 검증사이트 Says:
    March 26th, 2018 at 11:34 pm

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More on|Find More|Read More Infos here|There you will find 95681 additional Infos|Informations on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  21. ORM solutions Says:
    March 31st, 2018 at 6:28 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More on|Find More|Read More Informations here|There you will find 34398 additional Informations|Infos to that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  22. college of colarts Says:
    April 22nd, 2018 at 12:17 pm

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More on|Read More|Find More Infos here|There you will find 17593 more Infos|Infos to that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  23. tutorialcup Says:
    May 12th, 2018 at 8:03 pm

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More here|Read More|Read More Infos here|Here you will find 31847 additional Infos|Infos to that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  24. TEER values Says:
    May 16th, 2018 at 6:57 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More on|Find More|Read More Informations here|Here you can find 92794 more Informations|Infos on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  25. In vitro DMPK assays Says:
    May 18th, 2018 at 4:36 pm

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More here|Read More|Find More Infos here|There you can find 81498 additional Infos|Infos on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  26. Prada Jass Manak Says:
    June 12th, 2018 at 5:10 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More on|Read More|Read More Infos here|Here you will find 10891 more Infos|Informations to that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  27. cheap online viagra Says:
    July 5th, 2018 at 9:11 pm

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More on|Read More|Read More Infos here|Here you can find 78287 additional Infos|Infos on that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  28. buy Genesis Meds Says:
    July 8th, 2018 at 11:08 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Read More on|Read More|Find More Infos here|Here you will find 37215 more Infos|Infos to that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]

  29. sportsbook near me Says:
    July 17th, 2018 at 1:39 am

    … [Trackback]

    […] Find More here|Find More|Read More Informations here|Here you can find 22218 more Informations|Informations to that Topic: medialawjournal.co.nz/?p=638 […]