For months, Prime Minister John Key has been trying to turn down the political thermostat on his plans to confer on the GCSB as an organization and himself as its Minister vastly expanded powers to spy on New Zealanders. According to the government’s spin, the 180 degree change to the GCSB’s role as set out in the new, proposed legislation currently before Parliament is merely a bit of parliamentary housekeeping of an allegedly unclear legal situation.That spin is blatantly untrue. Section 14 of the existing law and the bipartisan will of Parliament at the time it was passed are crystal clear on this matter – the GCSB was forbidden to carry out domestic spying, which was to remain the sole province of the SIS. Yes, the very same National Party that made such a fuss about the Nanny State while in Opposition is now expanding the ability of the surveillance powers of Big Government. And, in the process, the GCSB that unilaterally broke the law meant to govern its activities is being rewarded by having those transgressions legalized.