Blog description.

Accentuating the Liberal in Classical Liberal: Advocating Ascendency of the Individual & a Politick & Literature to Fight the Rise & Rise of the Tax Surveillance State. 'Illigitum non carborundum'.

Liberty and freedom are two proud words that have been executed from the political lexicon: they were frog marched and stood before a wall of blank minds, then forcibly blindfolded, and shot, with the whimpering staccato of ‘equality’ and ‘fairness’ resounding over and over. And not only did this atrocity go unreported by journalists in the mainstream media, they were in the firing squad.

The premise of this blog is simple: the Soviets thought they had equality, and welfare from cradle to grave, until the illusory free lunch of redistribution took its inevitable course, and cost them everything they had. First to go was their privacy, after that their freedom, then on being ground down to an equality of poverty only, for many of them their lives as they tried to escape a life behind the Iron Curtain. In the state-enforced common good, was found only slavery to the prison of each other's mind; instead of the caring state, they had imposed the surveillance state to keep them in line. So why are we accumulating a national debt to build the slave state again in the West? Where is the contrarian, uncomfortable literature to put the state experiment finally to rest?

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Monday, March 10, 2014

NZ's Anti-Money Laundering & Countering Financing of Terrorism Act; Trust Law; Bounded Liberty #RedTapeNonsense


[ This’s a plea to Minister Judith Collins. It started out as an angry, ranty post, until I read on BBC that angry people risk heart attacks so I’ve tried to tone it down. This’s hard for me, though fortunately also useful as practice for when Judith’s anti-cyber bullying (hate speech) bill makes it to anti-free speech legislation and I really have to start self-censoring my b’s and f’s. (Although for the record, before I begin, that cup of milk … it’s irrelevant, I couldn’t give a damn, pass my congratulations onto your husband for his business success. Reads like a good bloke.) ]

As an independent (corporate) trustee of various trusts, the new Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act is adversely impacting on my life for no good reason I can see. On every client bank or property transaction I have to provide two, sometimes more, verified forms of ID, where previously one would do. A bank of one client trust which already has my driver’s licence details to prove I’m me, not an Al Qaeda sleeper, has just emailed to say it now requires a scanned copy of my credit card – what? - passport, or some other form of ID on their file. When asked why, the reply is 'because of the new money laundering Act.' Surely one ID is enough? Worse, my driver's licence et al has further got to be verified or witnessed by a solicitor, JP, or notary public, even on client banking facilities, loans, etc, I will never be executing a single cheque or drawdown from, and against which I have a professional indemnity. This is mental. And whereas in the past a wide range of people independent of myself could witness my signature on electronic transaction authorities, now it has to be, again, a solicitor, JP, or public notary, meaning when I’m living in the Mahau Sounds – soon to be six months a year – and a client sells the shop because they’re giving up under a tsunami of regulation and tax which is now life in the West - I have to drop any plans I might have had on that day, incur the understandable wrath of Mrs H., and make a three hour round ruddy trip to Blenheim – meaning I effectively lose a day – just to get a solicitor or JP to witness my signature; (witnessing only a witless nonsense.) As I thought this legislation was going to be, it has resulted in an ongoing waste of my time, all the while being philosophically repugnant given there are some privacy issues around having to give a huge range of financial institutions that I do not bank with, my private information, because much of the information in my passport, my driver's licence, et al, is private (for example, my birthdate - Mrs H, a joint director, is mortified at having to supply this to every damned bank in our small town and rural area, most of the staff of whom we have a passing acquaintance), and as for being asked to send a copy of my credit card, I wouldn't insecurely email my credit card details for a purchase transaction, let alone for this. And I'm not alone.
Coincidentally, just today I’ve had a lawyer – mine in fact - call in to sign a book of loan documents for a mutual client that would make War and Peace look like a short story, and he told of a bank that had just asked him, in his capacity as independent trustee, for a verified copy of his driver’s licence, a copy of his passport, a bank statement with his name on it - few more private documents than that - and a photocopy of his credit card. When it got to that latter item he told the bank to, quote, ‘F*** Off’.
And I concur. F*** off. The same reply the aforementioned bank will be getting in due course, (though I'll make them chase up the request first, and waste their time like mine is being.)
(Damn, I’ve let that pissed off feeling catch up with me.)
Judith, can you please get some reason back into this red tape monstrosity of an Act. It’s bullshit. I have started a process of actively trying to get out of all independent trusteeships, given the hurdles set up by this Act combined, more especially, with what looks to be the likely scoping of future trust legislation vis a vis such further liabilities that will have to be borne by independent trustees, including corporate trustees. Question: how does a corporate trustee with no assets pass a major transaction resolution or solvency test? Answer: it can't. And if legislation comes out of the Law Commission Review of Trusts as it is looking to be, there’s going to be unjustified, unholy mayhem in this field. Because while we're on the topic of trusts and privacy, trusts serve a useful function for many families when used correctly, and I’m not referring to matters regarding tax (in which they now have the highest overall tax rate). With what looks to be the upcoming move to public disclosure and transparency for family trusts this usefulness, and for some families, necessity, will be lost, and with that the last chance for parents in New Zealand to control the wishes and plans they have for their estate - the material product of their lives work – as distributed amongst the members of their families, given our judiciary has succumbed totally to a socialist ethic of ‘fairness’ and has no compunction anymore over-throwing Wills they think may advantage one sibling over another, despite that being, for whatever reason, the dead parent’s wishes: what a state when our children have been nationalised, judges apparently knowing what is better for children than their parents do. I’ve written many posts in here on the parlous state of our law with Gramsci at the head of every state classroom training our lawyers. An individual’s rights over their property, and the right to control what happens to that property, in life and death, are sadly consigned to distant history in New Zealand. Not just the overthrowing of what should be a sacrosanct last will and testament, no matter how unpopular a Will’s provisions might be to its beneficiaries, and offended a judge’s sense of fairness, but in the absence of trusts, and attacks on pre-nups, relationship property law as being interpreted by the courts, has also become another means of destroying private property rights - though that’s another topic entirely.

Back to the subject I started with, all this hassle and inconvenience for what? The number of instances of money laundering I’ve seen, heard of, read about, over almost quarter of a century in practice, is precisely none. That’s zero, zilch, not a single case. And last time I looked there were no terrorist cells running amok in South Canterbury, and even if there were, I doubt they’d be doing the economic and philosophical carnage that the Fortress of Legislation in Wellington is doing to us. Tell me again why we had this further red tape foisted on us? Particularly, how is supplying a verified copy of my driver’s licence, and my credit card, or bank statements, verified by a solicitor, JP or notary public, at much inconvenience, and complete with Mrs H having to disclose her age to the whole damn town, going to save New Zealand from terrorists?

Your party of small government continues its bureaucratic goose step into an intrusive big government pain in the arse. Kiwis have to wake up the real costs, which you can't count on an abacus.
Whoops, no that was a rant, wasn't it. Never mind, it's over now, thank you for your time, Judith, albeit I realise nothing will come from this.


Footnote on Privacy:

Bureaucrats will always be offhand with your privacy because your privacy from the state is, first, anathema to them, second, an annoyance: it’s the culture that is necessary for them to go about the evil work of having the big nose of state stuck firmly in your entrails. You must not have privacy from the tax surveillance state, ever. So this latest passport privacy breach is unsurprising, and from my perspective barely registers anymore:  so 400 passport applicants got to see the others email addresses. I’ve got to show my actual passport to all and bloody sundry, thanks to Judith, and for business which is ultimately nothing to do with me. Now that’s a privacy breach.



  1. I think the test of privacy is simple and needs go no further than the emigration and immigration cards ask. Compared to Hong Kong say, ours is a book. Here endeth the lesson.

    1. Bit too cryptic for me. I'm not sure what lesson you've taught me, exactly?

  2. "And last time I looked there were no terrorist cells running amok in South Canterbury"

    Clear proof Mark that the legislation is working!

    1. Oh shit. A massive hole in my post :)

      No wait. There were no terrorists *before* this nonsense Act either.

    2. Merely because you have not caught a melanoma in the past is no reason not to use sun-screen!

      My sophistry is endless. Resistance is futile.

      (I should have been a televangelist.)

    3. Compared to the state, a tithe seems cheap!

  3. Sorry to be obscure but my gist was that Hong Kong doesn't want to know too much about visitors and citizens whearas NZ asks about money and will even sniff you out to pinch it.

    1. Oh I see. Yes, I like the sound of that. Plus Hong Kong's low taxation rates.