Maybe Kim Dotcom can’t be trusted, but we know he’s not alone in that.
I always thought that businesspeople, and anyone who considered themselves a mover and a shaker, admired those with truly entrepreneurial qualities.
Thinking big, finding a niche, exploiting it, overreaching, failing and rising from the ashes are the ingredients of countless stories about our most prominent entrepreneurs, and business audiences lap it up.
Strangely, that narrative has failed to adhere to one famous local entrepreneur, Kim Dotcom. The National Party spin doctors have been hard at work, painting him as an evil German trying to subvert democracy, throwing in a side smear of "secret Nazi".
The first big charge against him is that he used his wealth to "try to sway the election". On that front, his mistake was probably being open about what he was up to.
To be clear, this is not at all like the people who pay $10,000 a head for a National Party fundraiser, hoping to entrench their entitlement. Not a bit like Alan Gibbs, who uses his wealth to keep a party with less than 1 per cent of the vote alive, and pumping its warped ideas into the national dialogue. Not like Colin Craig, who is using his wealth to finance a platform that many find whacky. No, this is finance provided to the left wing, and as such, is inherently evil.
Then we hear Kim Dotcom is even worse than that because ... "he's not a New Zealander!" Funnily enough, when the Government wanted to give him residency to curry favour with the US, they were happy enough to do so. Now the story is that, alternately, they didn't know about his background, made a mistake, and like wealthy individuals from overseas - and you're racist if you don't.
Finally, "he's a crook!" True, he's done hard time for hacking as a young man. But it seems from what I have read - I've never met him - that he found a business niche by providing a service that others exploited, fell afoul of Hollywood, which then leant on the US Government to have him banged up. He's a "crook" because the National Party spin doctors, at Hollywood's behest, have deemed it to be so.
Many New Zealanders will cheer when he is extradited to the US; they will consider it a win for "democracy" - failing to grasp that our own Government is being covertly told what to do, which is hardly democratic. We probably have no chance of getting more of our agricultural exports into the US while Dotcom remains at Coatesville.
Excuse me if I don't judge this man based on the spin put out by people who engage in dirty politics. Maybe Kim Dotcom can't be trusted, but we know for sure they can't be.
It has been disappointing to hear people like David Cunliffe buy into the wholesale dissing of Dotcom, as if Crosby/Textor is writing his lines as well.
The fact is that Dotcom helped a group of people who represent the most marginalised in society to get a voice on the national stage - a group promoting things like free tertiary education and eradicating child poverty which are, after all, true left-wing causes.
Just because 49 per cent of the voting public thought they weren't good ideas this time round, doesn't mean the pendulum won't swing back to the left in future.
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