GPJA #485 (Part 1 of 2): Dec 10 Book Launch – Peace, Power And Politics by Maire Leadbeater



A new book by Maire Leadbeater, published by University of Otago Press ( November 2013. The following events are being held to launch this book and to celebrate our nuclear free movement.

Auckland – December 10

Hosts: Auckland Labour History Group and Otago University Press. 5.30–7.30 pm 10 December 2013. Mt Eden Village Centre, 449 Mt Eden Road, Auckland. Speakers: George Armstrong, Claudia Pond Eyley, Bunny Mcdiarmid. Music: Caitlin Smith. (Hall entrance is off Ngauruhoe St, behind historic church).

RSVP: annie.newman


Guy Standing, author of The Precariat: The New Dangerous Class in 2011 who spoke at several events in New Zealand early this year, is coming back to NZ in February 2014. His new book A Precariat Charter: From Denizens to Citizens is due to be published in April 2014. See here. This will focus more on ‘what can be done’. As you know the CTU also published a document on insecure work in October and that included recommendations for action. A number of events are being organised (details still being finalised) including:

· Monday 24th February, 2014 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. hosted by University of Auckland and Auckland University of Technology.

· A seminar in Wellington on Wednesday 26th February (time to be confirmed)

· Discussion and brief presentation in afternoon of CTU National Affiliates Council at our 27th February meeting in Wellington

· Social event Friday late afternoon/evening in Wellington.


The seven finalists for the 2013 Roger Award for the Worst Transnational Corporation Operating in Aotearoa/New Zealand are: ANZ, Chorus, IAG Insurance Group, Imperial Tobacco, Rio Tinto, Sky City Casino and Talent 2.

The criteria for judging are by assessing the transnational (a corporation with 25% or more foreign ownership) that has the most negative impact in each or all of the following categories: economic dominance – monopoly, profiteering, tax dodging, cultural imperialism; people – unemployment, impact on tangata whenua, impact on women, impact on children, abuse of workers/conditions, health and safety of workers and the public; environment – environmental damage, abuse of animals; and political interference – interference in democratic processes, running an ideological crusade.

There is also an Accomplice Award for an organisation (not an individual) which was the worst Accomplice during the year in aiding and abetting transnational corporations in New Zealand to behave as described in the criteria. The Accomplice’s award is in addition to the Worst Transnational Corporation award and will not necessarily be awarded every year. There were several nominations for the Accomplice Award, all for the Government, mainly on general grounds. But the nomination for Chorus also nominated the Government for the Accomplice Award specifically in connection with Chorus.

ANZ has been a regular finalist and won the 2009 Roger Award. In 2013 it has been selected as a finalist because of profiteering, and treatment of its staff. One nomination specified “excessive pay for CEO; excessive profits; and charging excessive fees to customers”. ANZ is the first of the major banks to appear in court to defend the class action suit about excessive fees.

Chorus makes its first appearance in the Roger Award line up of corporate villains (perhaps it should be called the chorus line). It was specifically nominated in the economic dominance category and, within that, for profiteering. To quote from the nomination: “Chorus continues the worst features of the old Telecom, from which it was split in 2011 (as a touted “solution” to those worst features). It strives to preserve a monopoly; it grossly overcharges and tries every trick in the book to keep those inflated prices, including special pleading to its backer and accomplice, the Government. This story is very far from resolved at the time of this nomination and it remains to be seen how it turns out. But it is yet another example of the corporate welfare for which this Government has become notorious – Warner Brothers, Sky City, Rio Tinto, Media Works and now Chorus. The list goes on”.

IAG is a finalist for the second consecutive year. The reasons why are distressingly well known to anyone living in Christchurch in the last three years. The nomination is worth quoting in full: “Because instead of making thousands of Christchurch house owners feel looked after and doing their job, they quibble, penny-pinch and weasel out of their obligations. They have worn people down until they feel stressed and defeated. Despite their PR hype, they don’t ‘Love Christchurch’. They love maximising their profits and pleasing their shareholders. They are hated and despised for their chain-dragging and changing the rules in the middle of the game. May they rot in Hell!”

Imperial Tobacco continues a long and dishonourable history of tobacco companies featuring as finalists and winners of the Roger Award. The very detailed nomination specified Imperial’s “crimes against the health and safety of its workers and the public; and endeavouring to expand its market in NZ, after the Government has committed to making the nation smokefree by 2025”. An extract from the conclusion: “Tobacco kills about 5,000 New Zealanders annually. It is the greatest preventable cause of death and illness in New Zealand… If Imperial Tobacco were genuine in regard to their corporate social responsibility, they would cease to manufacture all of their existing brands. Instead, they conducted ‘testing programmes’ where thousands of cigarettes were distributed to their employees in breach of the Smokefree Environments Act: they proudly boast a growing market share in New Zealand even after this nation’s Government has committed to making the nation Smokefree by 2025: and they cynically settle disputes with the agreement to donate thousands when their profits remain in the millions. They must be shamed”.

Rio Tinto won the 2011 Roger Award and was runner up in 2012, 2009 and 08. One nomination said simply and in its entirety: “Blackmailing country”. So, 2013 has seen more of the same from the biggest recipient of corporate welfare – the Bluff smelter is the biggest bludger in the country. The 2011 Roger Award Judges’ Report concluded that the company has a 50 year history of “suborning, blackmailing and conning successive New Zealand governments into paying massive subsidies on the smelter’s electricity; dodging tax, and running a brilliantly effective PR machine to present a friendly, socially responsible and thoroughly greenwashed face to the media and the public”. The 2012 Judges’ Report is more succinct: “…it has us by the balls and has continued to squeeze ever since. It is corporate welfarism, but somehow doesn’t attract the same vindictiveness as the sickness beneficiary”.

Sky City Casino was nominated by several people because of its “more pokies for convention centre” deal with the Government. One nomination refers to the “current Key government essentially selling our laws in return for Sky City building an international convention centre” and to Sky City’s “ability to profiteer from others’ misery”. It concludes: “…Sky City is attempting to lock future governments into this dirty deal. (It) is pushing for draconian compensation provisions should a progressive Government decide that it is not OK to pay for a convention centre to be paid for by others’ misery”.

Talent 2 makes its first appearance in the Roger Award because of the complete and utter balls up that is its Novopay payroll system for long suffering teachers. Media reports routinely use words like “debacle” and “mess” in the headlines about Novopay. It has become a byword for an expensive IT failure, which has cost teachers’ millions in missed or mucked up salaries, plus it has cost taxpayers millions more as the Government has attempted to get it sorted out. The nominator specified: “monopoly” and “impact on teachers, teachers’ families, administrators and schools in general”.

The judges 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; David Small, a lawyer and Senior Lecturer in Education at the University of Canterbury; Sam Mahon, an artist, author and activist from North Canterbury; and Wayne Hope, Associate Professor, Communications Studies, Auckland University of Technology

The winner(s) will be announced at a Nelson event on the night of April 15th.

Full details, including previous winners and annual Judges’ Reports, can be read online at

Bad luck to all the finalists and may the worst man win!

Murray Horton, Secretary/Organiser, CAFCA


Thursday, December 5, 6pm, Clock Tower building, 22 Princes St., Lecture room #18, University of Auckland

“The Humanitarian Imperative to Ban Nuclear Weapons”. Speakers: Tim Wright -ICAN, International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons & Tilman Ruff -IPPNW, International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War. Sponsored by NZIIA, Auckland Branch.

Thursday, December 5, 6.30pm, OGGB3 Lecture Theatre,Owen Glen Building, University of Auckland

Myths, Politicians & Money – the Truth behind the Free Market. Bryan Gould launches his new book, Myths, Politicians and Money (ISBN 9781137358622), exposing why politicians around the world distort economic policy against the interest of ordinary people, how neo-liberalism has been allowed to rise to prominence and why the break- down of a European super-state will create economic stability for millions. We penalise and persecute benefit abuse but what happens to tax fraud. Bryan draws on his experience as a leading British politician and as a lawyer, academic, diplomat and television journalist to explain why the political and economic doctrines that have dominated the western world for three decades have meant that western countries have found that their democratic governments no longer serve them well.

Sunday, December 8, 6pm, Auckland Boys Grammar Pavilion, Gate 4 Mountain Road, Epsom, Auckland

Picket: Party for the rich – The National Party are throwing a Christmas party next Sunday the 8th of December at 6pm at the Auckland Boys Grammar Pavilion, Gate 4 Mountain Road, Epsom. We’d like to invite you to join us there in letting John Key and his mates know what we think of them and their ongoing attacks against beneficiaries and workers. Come prepared to make noise to ensure Key and the rest get the message. Stop the war on the poor! Facebook event details here: Location map: And please find flyer/poster attached – would be great if you could share the event and, if you have time, print and distribute the flyer or poster. Look forward to seeing you all there. Sarah (and Sue, Karen and Oliver) for AAAP

Sunday, December 8, 11am, Kauaeranga Valley Hall, Thames

Coromandel Watchdog of Hauraki invites members and supporters to attend our 2013 AGM and join us for a pot luck lunch afterwards.

Guest Speaker: Rob McCarthy, Waihi resident. Please bring a plate to share and $20 if you are not already a member so we can sign you up! Coromandel – too precious to mine. Kind Regards, Renee Annan, Coordinator, Coromandel Watchdog of Hauraki m: 0220181764 /

Tuesday, December 10, 4pm, Grey Lynn Community Centre, 510 Richmond Rd, Grey Lynn, Auckland

You are warmly invited to attend the launch of a research project by ChangeMakers Refugee Forum and the National Refugee Network.

‘Marking time’: Experiences of successful asylum seekers in Aotearoa New Zealand. Held on International Human Rights Day – 10 December 2013. 4.00pm-5.30pm. Please feel free to invite your colleagues or others in your networks who are working in this field.

For catering purposes please RSVP to Alia Bloom, ChangeMakers Refugee Forum Research Coordinator: alia or call (04) 801 5812

Tuesday, December 10, 5.30pm, Mt Eden Village Centre, cnr Ngaururohe St and Mt Eden Rd, Mt Eden

Book Launch: Peace, Power & Politics: How New Zealand became nuclear free. Speakers: George Armstrong, Claudia Pond Eyley, Bunny McDiarmid. Music: Caitlin Smith. RSVP for catering purposes: annie.newman

Tuesday, December 10, Art by the Sea Gallery, 30 King Edward Parade, Devonport, Auckland

AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL’s Cause for Collaboration -Art Exhibition and Poetry Reading: On 10 December you are invited to celebrate 65 years of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and enjoy fresh new artwork from over 15 NZ painters, potters, photographers and sculptors, each piece inspired by an article of the UDHR. All works are priced at $500 and 10% of all proceeds will be donated to Amnesty International and opening night will include food & drinks, raffle and poetry readings by NZ poets. More information here:

Friday, December 13, 7pm, Unite Office, 6a Western Springs Rd, Kingsland, Auckland

Bernadette – a film. A fearless, fiercely articulate Irish Republican firebrand in a miniskirt, Bernadette Devlin became Britain’s youngest elected female MP at 21 in 1969. Her maiden speech was a stinging attack on the British in Ireland; and when Home Secretary Reginald Maudling claimed that the British army had fired in self-defence on Bloody Sunday she strode across the House of Commons and punched him. Veteran Irish producer Lelia Doolan, a significant mover and shaker herself, has worked for ten years to produce a rousing and thorough picture of this woman who was once recognisable throughout the Western world as the embodiment of politicised youth in revolt. She’s survived imprisonment, a near-miss assassination attempt and years of struggle within and on behalf of the Republican cause. She remains a committed activist and organiser. Doolan builds the film around her own interviews with an often wry, but enduringly passionate, Devlin. The wealth of archival footage should convince any newcomer to her remarkable story that she was once a riveting fixture on the nightly news and an unstoppable force for change

January 24-26, 2014

CLOSE THE WAIHOPAI SPYBASE NOW! Organised by the Anti-Bases Campaign, P.O. Box 2258, Christchurch. E-mail abc

Saturday, January 25, 10am, Nativity Church Hall, 76 Alfred St, Blenheim

Blenheim public meeting on the morning of Saturday January 25th, on the wider issues of spying, to put Waihopai into context. We see this as a continuation of the 2013 protests and meetings about the infamous GCSB Bill (and its companion TICS Bill). SPIES AND LIES

WAIHOPAI AND GLOBAL SPYING. Speakers at that public meeting will be Jane Kelsey, John Minto and ABC’s Warren Thomson.

Murray Horton, ABC. Anti-Bases Campaign, Box 2258, Christchurch, New Zealand. abc / /



You can access the nomination form online at (Word) or

cafca Nominations close on October 31, 2013. Please note that Fonterra is not eligible





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