Oh I know I shouldn’t, but what the heck: this spy vs spy wrangle is keeping me most amused. Playing out on a world stage, thankfully while every other country is watching North Korea for signs of (more) madness, the Newzillun Gummint’s ineptness at running a spy agency (or two) seems to go from one slippery slope to another. Last week we had Jonkey almost unilaterlly declare war on North Korea, whilst standing in the grounds of its only remaining ally. Silly man. Amazingly, some 37% of Stuff readers agreed with him that we should “go to the aid” of South Korea if the North attacked – with what?!? We can’t just send Willie Apirata on his own, again! We live in one of the most dangerously unmilitarised countries in the world, with a 3 ship navy and 50 year old planes in a 5 plane air force, along with 105 troop carriers with rubber tyres and no guns, that can’t even fit on the planes more than one at a tim, and troops who can’t afford ammunition for whatever remaining Korean War era armaments that we still have left from the last time – in what possible world does Jonkey think we can do anything to help South Korea against the (admittedly nutty) well-armed North Korean forces? Even just by showing up we would be more of a hindrance than a help. And it is not like Willie Apirata can put on a turban and integrate with the natives this time – my guess is that our SAS is not full of native speakers of Korean.

This week, of course, we are back to the Spy Scandals – of which I am amazed that the Gummint is apparently bewildered that GCSB can’t spy on our own citizens. Surely that is the job of the SIS? It has been doing that for years! They’ve been taking a back seat since the 70s when they were exposed with a meat pie and a copy of Penthouse, but while it made good headlines then, it never really surprised anyone. What I am most interested in is that there has been no questioning of “Who are the 87 other Newzilluners” that the GCSB are spying on now? Obviously, apart from dangerous radicals such as Kim Schmitz, there will be others – presumably amongst them Tame Iti, Valerie Morse, and John Minto. I assume that the spooks have been spying on them all for years, as they seem to raise non mainstream matters on a regular basis. There will also be spying on people within gang cultures, such as Killer Bees and Mongrel Mob, Black Power and Grey Power.

The big question really is whether the Gummint is spying on “ordinary” kiwis, such as you, and I, and Lucy Lawless. Dangerous name right there for a start. Obviously a radical. But then so too is our Mayor Wade-Brown, who insists on dangerous radical actions like cycling to meet Hillary Clinton. “Two wheels bad, four wheels good!” chanted the fattened pigs of the NZTA, as they stood on their hind legs in the corner. If I was the one authorizing spying on 87 kiwis, I think I would concentrate on those people running finance firms, as that is where most of NZ’s dodgy money has run away to. Tackling 3000 cases of benefit fraud is one small measure which will save a couple of million a year, but imagine if they had tapped the phone or home of Alan Hubbard before he drove off into the sunset (or tree) along with many millions under the mattress? Or the Dominion Finance guys? Or the current Instant Finance guys – presumably just as dodgy, what with offering instant cash loans at exorbitant rates of interest. Fronted, in time-honored fashion, by an ex-Rugby player, who it is virtually guaranteed that he knows bugger-all about finance. There is so much dodginess and shonkiness in our safe little Newzillun society that I wouldn’t know where to start with the wire-taps. But probably, just to be on the safe side, I’d start with that dodgy guy who sits in the top room of the Beehive. I’d tap that!

More to the point is: who else is spying on us Kiwis? In time honored fashion, we can presume that of course the Russians and the Chinese will have some spies on the ground here, although it is obligatory to announce surprise when they are found. We also know that the Americans and probably the Brits also have a set of family-friendly spies spread out amongst us here in New Zealand, as that’s just standard operating procedure for countries like that. We know that French spies have been here in the past, and so can presume that they may still be here now, although the last lot were confined to a Pacific Island coral atoll to perform back-breaking punishing sun-bathing duties a few decades ago, as their “punishment” for sinking our Navy the Rainbow Warrior.

But what about North Korean spies? Seeing as we almost declared war on them a week ago, presumably some zealots from Big Kim (no, NOT Mr DotCom) are stationed here to sample our airwaves and sample our wine and report back to crazy Kim (no, NOT Mr DotCom) about the threat from downunder. Jonkey warns us that Newzillun is under cyber attack from abroad – and he is right, it does seem to be from a broad, as all the spam we are getting here appears to be targeted at Christian Laboutin shoes, and “genuine” leather handbags, rather than the bogus-Viagra that we got a year or more ago. Certainly the amount of spam has increased hugely in the last few weeks and months – from 5 a day last year, we now face about 50 a day. Personally, I’d like to see some spying done on the people who send spam – and a penalty of nothing less than death (by eating Spam) would suffice for them.

But one day the truth will out, and the list of 87 “ordinary” kiwis who were spied upon will be published, and cries of anguish will ensue. Why, for instance, was Len Brown, Mayor of Auckland spied upon? (I’m assuming some targets here, not as-yet confirmed). Was it just because of his dangerously subversive rail-loop? Andrew Little will have been spied upon, as he is not just a former union man, but also now a politician, and that of course is as dodgy as you can get. Although we can almost guarantee that National Party politicians won’t be spied on by this current government, what about Hone Harawira, and that dangerous radical Peter Dunne? One of those is almost certainly guaranteed to be spied on, keeping the spooks happy with a Penthouse in their other hand.

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