Monday, January 28, 2013

Feared and loved by the right people

Today's DomPost editorial looks at the Completely Independent Police Conduct Authority, the little black box that watches the watchmen. It highlights the abyss between David Carruthers' tilt for transparency and the reality that no-one actually knows what goes on in IPCA deliberations.

The curious case of a murder/suicide is held up as an example. The police were allegedly told the plot, yet neglected to do anything about it. Plot aspects differ in the case of Stephen McIntyre, although the ending remains the same. McIntyre's crime was not bloody murder, mere alleged medical cannabis supply.

I'm not even certain whether an IPCA complaint has been launched on that injustice. I'm not sure doing so would make a difference, or worse, earn the complainant a nemesis in a blue uniform.

Police mouth Greg O'Connor still quacks louder than this watchdog can bark in the public realm, and that's skew whiff. The cops plainly do not fear the IPCA enough. Perhaps it needs the gravitas of complete independence as an office of Parliament, like the Ombudsman's Office.


Marie Schroff's Privacy Office could do with a similar boost in prestige, power and jaws. Paula Bennett's big backdoor kiosks may just the the tip of an Identity & Privacy Rape iceberg. Note Bernard Hickey's Poli worry, a service used by many government departments.

There is little sign of National wishing to increase funding for Beverley Wakem and her Om Buddies, regardless of how many more complaints against governmental bias are appearing in the Inbox.

Sure as eggs is eggs the Nats don't want more scrutiny on their rickety blueprints, let alone splash cash on self-criticism. Key's government is so thin-skinned to scrutiny, they still won't fund political satire on NZ screens. Even Muldoon put up with Fred Dagg and A Week of It. Every government from there to here has been heckled on screen. Every one until the Intolerable Mr Key.