GPJA #441 (Part 1): News from Aotearoa New Zealand – 13/9/12


2012 has seen the Government get New Zealand back into ANZUS in all but name. For the first time since the 1980s, American troops have trained here; NZ troops have trained in the US; and NZ warships have taken part in US-led naval exercises. How ironic that all this was happening at the same time as the country was celebrating the 25th anniversary of our nuclear free law.

The public face of New Zealand’s role as an American ally is the NZ military presence in Afghanistan. But New Zealand’s most significant contribution to the global American warfighting machine is, and has been for more than 20 years, the Waihopai electronic intelligence gathering base, located in the Waihopai Valley, near Blenheim. It is controlled by the US, with New Zealand (including Parliament and the Prime Minister) having little or no idea what goes on there, let alone any control.
First announced in 1987, Waihopai is operated by New Zealand’s Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) in the interests of the foreign Powers grouped together in the super-secret UKUSA Agreement (which shares global electronic and signals intelligence among the intelligence agencies of the US, UK, Canada, Australia and NZ). Its satellite interception dishes intercept a huge volume of civilian telephone calls, telexes, faxes, e-mail and computer data communications.
It spies on our Asia/Pacific neighbours, and forwards the material on to the major partners in the UKUSA Agreement, specifically the US National Security Agency (NSA). Its targets are international civilian communications involving New Zealanders, including the interception of international phone calls.
Post- 9/11 the GCSB and Waihopai now spy further afield, to those regions where the US is waging wars. The codename for this – Echelon – has become notorious worldwide as the vast scope of its spying has become public. New Zealand is an integral, albeit junior, part of a global spying network, a network that is ultimately accountable only to its own constituent agencies, not governments, and certainly not citizens.
Join us for the weekend of anti-war protest at this spy base. Come prepared for roughing it and camping out. We provide the food (we cater for vegetarians but vegans will have to bring their own). Bring sleeping bag, groundsheet, a tent, torch, water bottle, eating utensils, clothing for all weather, and $40 (or $20 unwaged) to cover costs. No open fires.
How to find our camp at Whites Bay: turn off SH1 at Tuamarina (9km north of Blenheim or 20 km south of Picton) and drive to Rarangi on the coast. Follow the steep Port Underwood Road over the hilltop before descending to the Whites Bay turnoff. There is a DoC public camp at the bay with basic facilities. ABC has to pay a fixed charge per head.
Waihopai does not operate in the interests of New Zealanders or our neighbours. Basically it is a foreign spy base on NZ soil and directly involves us in America’s wars. Waihopai must be closed.
Email abc for further registration information.

The SWITCH OFF MERCURY ENERGY community group (formed on 15 August 2012) want 100,000 MERCURY ENERGY CUSTOMERS to SWITCH OFF MERCURY ENERGY (100% owned by Mighty River Power), in order to throw a HUGE spanner into this National/ACT Government’s privatisation agenda! SWITCH OFF MERCURY ENERGY call on all those who have marched down the street and signed the petition against asset sales to now take the action which CANNOT be ignored – thousands of Mercury Energy customers leaving in droves, which will cause the profits of parent company Mighty River Power (MRP) to fall – thus making Mighty River Power a most unattractive investment. There is a precedent for this. In 2008, in a time of financial downturn, (already privatised) Contact Energy doubled their directors’ fees and increased their prices 12%. In six months, 40,000 customers left Contact Energy, whose profits were halved. IT’S PEOPLE POWER TIME! To whom do you ‘switch’? Meredian Energy Ph: 0800 496 496 Genesis Energy Ph: 0800 496 496 Powershop Ph: 0800 496 496 Energy On Line Ph: 0800 496 496 (Contact Energy, Empower and Trustpower are already privatised – so – if you’re opposed to privatisation, don’t switch to them!) On 3 September 2012, Prime Minister John Key announced that the proposed sale of up to 49% of shares in Mighty River Power has now been delayed, and will now take place between March and June 2013. This delay is a victory! Key will claim it is the Maori Council that caused the delay, but financial commentators have shown that the companies aren’t as profitable as Government hoped. This battle is winnable! Switching off Mercury Energy will further erode that profit. This may make Government put another company, perhaps Genesis Energy, up for sale instead. So SWITCH OFF MERCURY ENERGY now. And be prepared to switch off any other company that’s up for sale. And sign the petition now, calling for a referendum against all asset sales. SWITCH OFF MERCURY ENERGY SPOKESPEOPLE: Penny Bright, Ph: (09) 846 9825 / 021 211 4 127 Chris Glen 022 020 4400

Caterpillar makes an armored bulldozer for the Israeli military to use for demolishing Palestinians homes. In 2003 an Israeli soldier driving a Caterpillar D9 killed 23-year-old Rachel Corrie, who was acting as a “human shield” in front of a Gaza house with children still inside. An Israeli judge recently ruled that Rachel’s killing was her own fault. Church funds and pension funds around the world are divesting from Caterpillar for ethical reasons. We think NZ Superfund should also divest. Lois and Martin Griffiths in Christchurch have started an online petition which asks Parliament to request Superfund guardians to divest from Caterpillar. To sign the petition, click here

THE TIGERS OF WRATH (are wiser than the horses of instruction).
PEKING, 1974. Trish is ex-St Cuth’s, Pauline is ex-Onehunga High; they’re dykes and Maoists and members of the Auckland PYM. Oliver is from Wellington, writes for Salient and is a member of MiLO. All three are on an NZUSA trip to Red China. HERNE BAY, 1994. Trish is now Labour MP for New Lynn and Opposition spokesperson on education. Oliver has given up writing to become an immigration lawyer. MANGERE BRIDGE, 2009. Oliver’s being investigated by the Serious Fraud Office. Pauline’s cleaning the South Auckland toilets of the BNZ. Trish is a TV current affairs host and the mother of the nation. THE TIGERS OF WRATH. A story of NZ from the recession of the mid-1970s to the crash of 2008-09. This is us. Circa Theatre, Wellington, Nov 3 – Dec 1. Cheap preview night Nov 2. Written by: Dean Parker, Directed by: Jane Waddell


Thieves And Conmen: Government Wants To Steal What Is Ours & Sell A Little Bit Of It Back To Us by Murray Horton
Christchurch Council Under Privatisation Pressure by Marty Braithwaite
The Risks Of Private Public Partnerships To The Health System by Bill Rosenberg
Secrecy In TPPA Negotiations Mocks Democracy by Jane Kelsey
Roger Award Event Comes Home by Murray Horton
Kim Dotcom And The Good Character Test: Money Versus Power by James Ayers
Euro Lessons We Should All Learn by Bryan Gould
Class Size Matters The Most Where Students Are Struggling by John Minto
Ports Of Auckland Dispute: It’s About Job Security And Public Ownership by Joe Fleetwood
Blood And Salty Water: The NZ Fishing Industry’s Failed Experiment With Globalisation by Victor Billot
A Major Leftwing Think Tank In Aotearoa: Call To Action Or Impossible Dream? by Sue Bradford
Fair “Share” For Aged Care by Alastair Duncan
Primary Production, Free Trade, Resource Conflict & Corporate Plunder: Part 3 by Dennis Small
Coromandel Still Under Threat by Augusta Macassey-Pickard and Renee Annan
Reviews by Jeremy Agar
Franzi & The Great Terrain Robbery by Sam Mahon
Coal And The Coast: A Reflection On the Pike River Disaster by Paul Maunder
Jagged Seas: The New Zealand Seamen’s Union 1879-2003 by David Grant
The Health Of Nations: Towards A New Political Economy by Gavin Mooney
Capitalism: A Structural Genocide by Garry Leech
Justice On the Agenda by Liz Gordon
Obituary by Murray Horton
Larry Ross
How Many NZ Jobs Do TNCs Provide? by Murray Horton


I am compiling a list of grandparents who support the bill to extend paid parental leave to 26 weeks. Go to Anne.goodman

The Bruce Jesson Foundation was established in 1999 to commemorate one of New Zealand’s greatest political journalists, the late Bruce Jesson, by promoting “vigorous political, social and economic investigation, debate, analysis and reporting in New Zealand”. To this end, the Foundation holds an Annual Lecture and awards two journalism prizes:
• The Senior Journalism Prize which is self-nominated by the journalists themselves and involves an emolument of up to NZ$4,000 to assist them to produce the kind of critical and analytical journalism exemplified by Jesson’s work.
• The Emerging Journalism Prize which has a fixed emolument of $1,000 and is designed to recognise “outstanding recent work by New Zealand print journalism students.” It is nominated by the heads of New Zealand journalism schools or journalism programme leaders for published work by student journalists.
Nominations for the 2012 Bruce Jesson Journalism Prizes are hereby sought both from self-nominating senior journalists and the Heads of New Zealand journalism schools respectively. Nominees’ work will be assessed by members of the Foundation’s Journalism Subcommittee: Camille Guy (convener), Joe Atkinson, Simon Collins, Jon Stephenson, and Geoff Kemp.
Nominations together with copies of nominated work (preferably in electronic form) can be entered electronically on the Foundation website or mailed to Dr Anita Lacey, Secretary of the Bruce Jesson Foundation, C/- Political Studies Department, University of Auckland, PB 92019, AUCKLAND. The DEADLINE for receipt of nominations is extended to Friday, September 14, 2012.

The Roger Award For The Worst Transnational Corporation operating in New Zealand has run annually since 1997. There are no prizes for guessing whom it is named after. It is organised by CAFCA and GATT Watchdog, both Christchurch-based groups. The judges have awarded prizes for runners up, continuity and collaborators. The Award has attracted considerable interest since its inception (even from the corporate media), and has had a succession of distinguished and completely voluntary judges. The events to announce the winners have become highly memorable in their own right. Winners of previous awards and judges’ reports can be seen below.
New Nominations are open for the 2012 Award. The nomination form with details of the criteria and how to make a nomination is available in Word or PDF format. Criteria are also below. Nominations close on 31 October 2012.
The judges for 2012 are: Christina Stringer, a Senior Lecturer in International Business at the University of Auckland; John Maynard , from Wellington, President of the Postal Workers Union of Aotearoa, spokesperson for People’s Power Ohariu and founding member of the Brass Razoo Solidarity Band; Paul Maunder, cultural worker, curator of Blackball Museum of Working Class History and a founding member of Unite!; Sam Mahon, an artist, author and activist from North Canterbury; and Wayne Hope, Associate Professor, Communications Studies, Auckland University of Technology. They will be given a shortlist of finalists. The winner(s) will be announced at a Wellington event in early 2013. For more information


‎""Over the last few years however, National government ministers have allocated water rights, established bodies to manage regional water resources then appointed their mates to those bodies, and even tried to sell off state assets built by New Zealanders that rely on free access to, and exclusive use of, our waters. And they have done so with the pompous arrogance that comes from assuming ownership of that water, ignoring the huge wave of opposition to their asset sales programme coming from across all sectors of New Zealand Society, and without any reference whatsoever to Maori rights under the Treaty of Waitangi." Hone Harawira



1000 march for same-sex marriage

Morgan Godfrey: Shame on the Maori Party

Interview with David Williams re: Maori Land Court

Joshua Iosefo’s Inspiring Speech – Brown Brother

Mighty Foolish – Does anyone still think the share sales in state energy assets are a good idea? by Gordon Campbell

Aussie union boss floors Paul Henry with Kiwi, small audience jibes

NZ environmental groups join forces to oppose weakening of RMA

Key and Joyce are dragging New Zealand back to Neanderthal times with asset sales agenda

Covert plan for user-pays education, claims report

Select Committee report on Immigration Amendment Bill 2012 fails human rights test

Since the start of August five New Zealand soldiers have died in and around a small coal mining village in central Afghanistan whose name will enter the history books of this country, Do Abe.

Every tribe has a river – Harawira

Harawira drops N-bomb on water hui debate

Where does the term “House Nigger/Negro” comes from anyway?

NZ POLITICS DAILY: They blinked by Bryce Edwards

Greens: Why is National copying Australia’s failed highway PPPs?

Jayson Gardiner – What is tino rangatiratanga?

High Court coal-climate ruling appealed

Jim Traue: Advantage lies at home when it comes to education

Bain innocent and deserves payout, judge tells Cabinet

Black day for democracy in Canterbury and the nation

Think Tank: Health care in NZ

Congrats to Labour – Harawira

Chris Trotter: Canterbury democracy hammered

Entertainers attack NZ boat people law

We are better than that video

"Queue Jumpers" Perish Off Australia: NZ Human Rights Threat

Gordon Campbell on the government’s lack of a jobs policy, and our abortion laws

NZ soldiers tribute, Not where they belong: A song that I have written as a tribute to NZ Soldiers in Afghanistan. my thoughts also go out to the families and also the Australian Soliers. This is a song by Liam Kennedy-Clark


Te Urewera to be returned to Tuhoe (+video)

Opinion: Tuhoe deal ‘monumental’

Tuhoe deal puts bitter grievances to rest

Huge sacrifices from both sides in elegant win-win solution

Tuhoe gets more say in giant park


Key in poverty ‘la la land’

CTU: Ten actions to reduce poverty in New Zealand

Bryan Gould: Tackling child poverty should be priority

2011 FOOD COSTS FOR FAMILIES – Analysis of the proportion of the minimum wage and income support benefit entitlements that

families need to purchase a healthy diet by Vicki Robinson, Public Health Dietitian, Regional Public Health

Child poverty costs NZ $10b a year – expert

A poverty of ideas: Opinion by Lachlan Forsyth – It is our great failing as a nation.

Editorial: Breakfast is not too much to ask

School costs parents more

Bold targets needed to curb child poverty

Single mothers shoplifting to make ends meet

Child poverty costs NZ $10b a year – expert

Sole parent benefit as a percentage of the average wage


Living wage campaign gets strong support

SERIOUS CAMPAIGN Green Party MPs, Wellington Mayor Celia Wade – Brown, and living wage supporters.

Why support Living Wages?

Dunedin firm ordered to pay workers $14,000

Alison McCulloch: Port ‘flexibility’ works one way

Migrants plug holes to train as managers

Trades Hall bombing remains unsolved, 24 years on

Wellingtonians sign up for end to “dying wage”

Key rejects child allowance call

Family struggle on minimum wage – Working family can’t afford to run fridge

Workers ‘expected to be grateful’

Solid Energy cuts a fresh blow for West Coast

Your boss could put a stop to quick smoko breaks

Bus drivers to strike every Monday

1000 march to save Spring Creek

Government breaks jobs pledge, says CTU,-says-ctu

Defend workers, migrant, and union rights against Burger King

Doctors defend right to speak out

Sleepover case: Another step forward for NZ’s frustrated low-paid workers

The online submission to support extending paid parental leave is now live and circulating! Please spread amongst your networks, union facebook pages, twitter accounts and websites – Thanks!

Norske Skog confirms Kawerau mill cuts

Fired union member wins $10,000 compo

Aotearoa: the State of the Class Struggle

RMTU: Final Decision on Port Jobs a Huge Blow for Timaru

First: 90 day trial not helping, union says


Gordon Campbell on APEC, and its significance for the TPP talks

Gareth Morgan: Universal child payment better than Working for Families

Amnesty: TPP Must Not Trade Away Free Speech and Health

Brian Easton introduces Fabian Light-handed Regulation Series.

Interview: Satyajit Das on New Zealand and the global financial crisis

MANA renews appeal for a Financial Transactions Tax

Rio Tinto: Just Close and Bugger Off

TPPWatch Action Bulletin #17 – 12 September 2012

CTU: Worsening forecasts don’t help those out of work

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