Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search


NZ Citizens "Subvert Democracy" (Satire)

EDITORS NOTE: Scoop is proud to host the online version of the Babylon Express satirical newspaper. Those easily offended and not often amused should avoid this content. See authors note at the end of this article for more information about the Babylon Express.

New Zealand Citizens "Subvert Democracy"

Prime Minister hits out at "reckless" seeking of official information

The Prime Minister has accused some New Zealand citizens of subverting democracy by seeking official information for political reasons. In a statement today, Helen Clark said some private citizens and organisations were "unwilling or unable" to simply accept official information as it is presented.

"Sometimes reasons for seeking information are advanced which seem to relate more to personal, political or communal convenience. Seekers of official information need to be reminded that by requesting information from MP's and government agencies they are in fact hampering those same ministers and agencies ability to participate freely and without consequence in the representative democratic process."

Ms Clark did not name any New Zealand citizens personally.

It is not the first time the New Zealand public has been chided by the Prime Minister. In 2002 she castigated the country for being "in an absolute mess", and used State of Emergency powers to postpone Friday night for 16 hours until it had all - all! - been tidied up. Last year she instructed Judy 'Mamma-San' Bailey to send the nation to bed at 7pm for consistently answering back, before cutting all telecommunications capabilities for the night and suspending all overseas travel privileges for three weeks.

Under the official Information Act, government bodies and ministers have a minimum of 20 working days to issue a refusal for requested information, though they can take longer for simpler, more direct requests. A study by Victoria University Fulla Paul E. Paul, to be published this month, found that in two-thirds of cases where citizens requested information, they "failed to take into account national interest considerations, such as the free-ranging ministerial ability to sign bilateral trade deals that subvert New Zealand's already perilous economic sovereignty even more".

The government was embarrassed before the election when the phatbudsdude ordered the publication of Treasury costings on granting education minister Steve Maharey with a Tom Robbins Personality Plus! upgrade. These estimated the implant would cost $6 million more than the $3 million the finance minister had claimed. Referring to the public outcry that followed, the Prime Minister was scathing of the "haters and wreckers that have caused little Steven such harm. If they could have sent him crying and crying away, all curled up on the mat in the corner of my office, waiting forlornly to be digitally implanted with a bright new personality, I do not believe they would be so reckless in requesting information about what we do, why we do it, and what outcomes might have been registered."


- The Babylon Express is a satirical newspaper published randomly in Wellington. Copies are so far only available in local shops whose proprietors haven't got sticks up their arses. Those interested in acquiring previous or upcoming print edition copies should contact the editor at or subscribe at the online home of the Babylon Express (including previous online articles) here on Scoop at: Contributions and suggestions are always very welcome. Cheers.
Readers may also like to consider subscribing to the online email version in Free My Scoop.

© Scoop Media

Top Scoops Headlines


Binoy Kampmark: The Major Questions Doctrine: The US Supreme Court Blunts The EPA
The US Supreme Court has been frantically busy of late, striking down law and legislation with an almost crazed, ideological enthusiasm. Gun laws have been invalidated; Roe v Wade and constitutional abortion rights, confined to history. And now, the Environmental Protection Agency has been clipped of its powers in a 6-3 decision.
The June 30 decision of West Virginia v Environmental Protection Agency was something of a shadow boxing act... More>>

Ian Powell: Are we happy living in Handy's Age of Unreason?

On 19 June the Sunday Star Times published my column on the relationship between the Labour government’s stewardship of Aotearoa New Zealand’s health system and the outcome of the next general election expected to be around September-October 2023: Is the health system an electoral sword of Damocles for Labour... More>>

The First Attack On The Independents: Albanese Hobbles The Crossbench
It did not take long for the new Australian Labor government to flex its muscle foolishly in response to the large crossbench of independents and small party members of Parliament. Despite promising a new age of transparency and accountability after the election of May 21, one of the first notable acts of the Albanese government was to attack the very people who gave voice to that movement. Dangerously, old party rule, however slim, is again found boneheaded and wanting... More>>

Dunne Speaks: "Let's Get Wellington Moving" Yeah, Right
There was great excitement in Wellington recently when the government finally announced – after much procrastination and indecision – its intentions for the ever so over-optimistically titled “Let’s Get Wellington Moving” plan... More>>

Dunne Speaks: Roe V. Wade Blindsides National

Momentum is everything in politics, but it is very fragile. There are times when unexpected actions can produce big shifts and changes in the political landscape. In 2017, for example, the Labour Party appeared headed for another hefty defeat in that year’s election until the abrupt decision of its then leader to step aside just weeks before the election. That decision changed the political landscape and set in train the events which led to Labour being anointed by New Zealand First to form a coalition government just a few weeks later... More>>

Digitl: Infrastructure Commission wants digital strategy
Earlier this month Te Waihanga, New Zealand’s infrastructure commission, tabled its first Infrastructure Strategy: Rautaki Hanganga o Aotearoa. Te Waihanga describes its document as a road map for a thriving New Zealand... More>>