Google
 

Aardvark Daily

New Zealand's longest-running online daily news and commentary publication, now in its 23rd year. The opinion pieces presented here are not purported to be fact but reasonable effort is made to ensure accuracy.

Content copyright © 1995 - 2017 to Bruce Simpson (aka Aardvark), the logo was kindly created for Aardvark Daily by the folks at aardvark.co.uk



Please visit the sponsor!
Please visit the sponsor!

When you don't learn from mistakes

17 March 2017

Nothing is ever a total loss. Even the worst disaster brings lessons that can be used to enable a higher level of preparedness for the next bad event.

Most people find that when they make mistakes, the lessons learned serve them well in the future. It is through trying and failing that we gain a great deal of our most useful knowledge -- unless of course we don't learn anything from those mistakes.

A man, much wiser than myself, once said that those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it.

Well maybe NZ's immigration people should be listening.

We all recall the story of Kim Dotcom.

Kim was a multi-millionaire with a very shady past who applied for residency in New Zealand.

Since residency and citizenship appear to be commodities that can be purchased, if you apply sufficient cash to the right palms, he breezed in and set up shop in a huge mansion near Auckland.

Kim wined and dined the politicians, put on fireworks displays for the peasants and continued raking in enormous fortunes from his online business which, the US authorities alleged, were just a giant copyright infringement.

Eventually the NZ government tired of Kim and allowed the USA (by way of its Kiwi peers) to ride roughshod over the protections and rights that ought to apply to NZ residents.

Kim and his family were held at gunpoint for hours and their possessions were taken from them. Kim himself was thrown in jail for some time before being released on bail and now pleads for his right to stay in the country whose politicians and bureaucrats once welcomed him with outstretched palms.

So what have we learned from this?

Firstly, copyright offences are very serious things. They justify illegal spying, commando-type raids on a family and what ultimately amounts to armed robbery and detention.

Secondly, not only is our immigration system able to be bought by anyone with enough cash to grease the right palms (eh Mr Thiel?) but it's also so stupid it never learns from past mistakes.

Now, finally, to the point of today's column...

According to this NZ Newswire report a Filipino man has been granted NZ residency despite having been found guilty of copyright charges in the USA; charges that amounted to a $35m award against him by the courts.

Hmmm... that sounds vaguely similar to Mr Dotcom's case doesn't it?

Now one can only assume that if Mr Motomal had enough money to settle the $35m judgment in a "private settlement",he's not short of a quid or two. One can only assume that he had enough cash left to grease those palms so, for the time being, he joins Mr Thiel and Mr Cameron as "flavours of the day" from an immigration standpoint.

Or maybe it's that he qualifies under the list of jobs which can't be filled by Kiwis -- do we need copyright infringers? Don't we already have enough of our own? Couldn't Kim do that job? After all, he does have a stunning resume in that regard, at least according to our good friends in the USA.

Interestingly enough, Immigration are saying that the judgment against Mr Motomal for copyright infringement won't hurt his residency status -- because "it's just a civil case".

So someone remind me why Kim has been stripped of his assets and faces extradition again? What was it *he* did? Oh, that's right -- he infringed copyright.

Now I know that the USA tacked on some money laundering charges to try and introduce an element of criminality but surely even our cloth-headed politicians can see through that rouse. So is copyright infringement a crime or not? Why is Mr Motomal being welcomed with open arms while we try to kick Kim out on his arse?

Sigh!

Please visit the sponsor!
Please visit the sponsor!

Have your say in the Aardvark Forums.

PERMALINK to this column


Rank This Aardvark Page

 

Change Font

Sci-Tech headlines

 


Features:

Beware The Alternative Energy Scammers

The Great "Run Your Car On Water" Scam

 

The Missile Man The Missile Man book

Recent Columns

Youtube content creators are revolting
No, I'm not suggesting that those who create content for YouTube inspire feelings of revulsion...

Why so slow MPAA?
I recall a few years ago that the MPAA and other groups representing copyright owners were hot on the heels of anyone using a P2P network to pilfer content...

Fantastic news from SkyTV
Yesterday was a fantastic day for shareholders in Sky Television...

Finally, drone collides with airliner?
If a drone and a plane collide the result is bound to be death and destruction. If a drone and a helicopter collide, the same outcome is inevitable, only more-so...

Elon Musk's Hype-loop
It's going to change the world; apparently...

A stroke of genius
What is it about anti-virus software that attracts so many rogues and bad actors?...

News from your ISP and power company?
I think it's fair to say that the news publishing industry has been adversely affected by the power of the Net...

From the road, for the road
Tesla are pouring gargantuan sums of money into building a factory dedicated to manufacturing the type of 18650 Li-Ion cells used in the growing range of EVs that the company plans to make...

The harder we work, the slower we go?
The transistor was first invented back in 1947 or 48 and took a good 15 or 20 years to find its way from laboratory breakthrough to use in every-day products such as radios, amplifiers, etc...

Doing my bit
Your daily dose is a bit late today because I've been out doing my bit for the community...

The global warming ice-age
A regular reader sent me a link to an interesting piece on climate change, aka global warming, aka climate disruption...