by Andrew Geddis

As a society, must we let obnoxious provocateurs have a public stage? How do we decide when others must bear the burden of their speech?  

Up until about a week ago, I and most of New Zealand hadn’t the faintest clue who Lauren Southern or Stefan Molyneux were. Having better things to do than mine the seamier veins of the internet, I still haven’t really engaged in any depth with this pair of Canadian alt-right provocateurs’ “message” (such as they have one beyond “let’s make a buck from owning the libs”).  

In the wake of the publication of Dirty Politics back in 2014, the New Zealand Police undertook multiple unlawful breaches of Nicky Hager's privacy. They've now apologised for that - but the important thing is to make sure it does not ever happen again.

Readers able to remember events of more than a fortnight ago (or, events prior to Fortnite, for that matter) will recall the 2014 election campaign and those never-quite-peak-cray days of Dirty Politics.

What narrative emerged from Radio NZ's bosses revisiting the Economic Development select committee room? Nothing definitive ... but there's more to come yet, I think.

In terms of political theatre, not much beats a select committee hearing when there is the smell of scandal in the air. If that scandal involves potential political interference in a state-owned media organisation like Radio NZ, drama levels lift yet another notch.

Should we just make up some Russian spies so we can kick them out because the rest of the world is doing it? Or, would that be a less-than-ideal politicisation of intelligence information? I report, you decide.

The Government is taking a lot of heat for not expelling any Russians. That seems like an odd thing to for people to get worked up about, but there you are.

You can judge how the issue has unfolded by the fact that in a space of 24 hours, Simon Bridges has gone from grave statesman "we must stand as one on this issue" mode:

Carol Hirschfeld's resignation as head of content for RNZ shows that "Honesty Is The Best Policy", while Claire Curran's decision to set up a cafe meeting reminds us all to "Look Before You Leap". Let the clichés commence ... .

Outside of the National Party’s caucus room, there are two sets of people who will be very glad to see Carol Hirschfeld and Claire Curran caught up in a political whirlwind of their own making.

A bunch of legal and political studies academics think the proposed Electoral (Integrity) Amendment Bill (or, party hopping law) is a bad idea. Here's why.

Today a group of 19 legal and political studies academics submitted our joint view that the Electoral (Integrity) Amendment Bill is poor policy that should not be enacted into law. 

Wearing a wig is not a form of expression. Depending, that is, upon the sort of wig it is. And why the person is wearing it. Maybe. Hope that clears things up for you.

The Court of Appeal handed down its decision yesterday on whether, under the NZ Bill of Rights Act 1990, Phillip Smith has an expressive right to wear a wig.

As I told Laura Walters at stuff.co.nz, Clayton Mitchell's bill to deem English an official language of Aotearoa New Zealand is a piece of legally meaningless virtue signalling. Here's why.

A (probably apocryphal) story recounts how former Texas Governor Miriam Amanda "Ma" Ferguson objected to the teaching of Spanish in Texas schools as follows: "If the King's English was good enoug

An Israeli legal group are threatening to sue two New Zealand women for writing an opinion piece on a New Zealand website. They'll probably never get a cent from it, but that's not really the point of the exercise.

For “a small, publicly-funded, Auckland-based millennial website specialising in television listicles, ‘pop-culture’, and fake news”,  The Spinoff sure does seem to stir up a lot of trouble.

Should NZ reintroduce legislation requiring MPs that leave their parties to also quit Parliament? The debate over that question involves a battle over what happened in the past.

Today's Dominion Post carries a couple of opinion pieces by Nick Smith and Winston Peters, respectively arguing