The British Labour Party actually produced this mug for the last British elections; like their British counterparts, the NZ Labourites are a bunch of anti-immigrant bigots

The British Labour Party actually produced this mug for the last British elections; like their British counterparts, the NZ Labourites are a bunch of anti-immigrant bigots

The following article details yet another of Labour’s racist immigration efforts – in this case the 2008 Immigration Amendment Bill.  Indeed, one of the few differences between National and Labour is that the Labourites seem to be rather more racist than National when it comes to immigration.  The article below appeared in The Spark, a predecessor to this blog, back in July 2008.

by John Edmundson

In the years following the September 11, 2001 attacks, the world has seen a massive tightening of immigration controls. In this country, many New Zealanders’ first experience of this trend was the overnight quadrupling of the cost of maintaining a passport. In one fell swoop, the life of a passport was halved, from ten years to five, while the cost doubled as new “anti-terrorism” identification security features were added. In the US, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has gained, and proceeded to use, sweeping new powers to raid and subsequently deport “illegals”, mostly from Latin America.

The latest round of policy change comes with the Immigration Amendment Bill currently being debated in select committee. While this Bill was introduced by Labour, it appears to have support from National, ACT, New Zealand First and United Future. The Bill, if passed in anything remotely approaching its current form, will represent a massive attack on basic civil rights in New Zealand, not only for would-be immigrants or refugees but also for New Zealand citizens.

Secret Evidence

The new Bill proposes a radical overhaul of New Zealand’s policy on the screening of potential immigrants and refugees wishing to settle here. Following the Ahmed Zaoui case, where the state’s crude attempts to deny Zaoui even the most minimal of rights in conducting a defence, the government has decided to change the rules. The heads of many government departments and agencies will have the right to declare information classified if Read the rest of this entry »

On this blog, and in previous incarnations, we have consistently argued that Labour and National are parties which are utterly dedicated to the management of capitalism.  The main difference between them is that National are the frontstabbers and Labour are the backstabbers.  Among those whom Labour has consistently backstabbed are migrant workers from the Pacific.  The piece below is from October 2008, when a number of us constituted the central leadership core of the Workers Party and two current Redline writers and editors were WP candidates.  It is a WP press release about Helen Clark lying over who started the notorious dawn raids on Pacific Islanders in the 1970s.

dawn-raids“Remember the National Party initiated dawn raids in the 1970s?” Ms Clark told reporters on the election campaign trail in South Auckland on 23 October.

“Either Ms Clark is ignorant of the facts or she is knowingly concealing the truth,” says Daphna Whitmore, Workers Party candidate for Manukau East. “Labour was in government from 1972 until 1975, and the dawn raids on Pacific Islanders began in 1974.”

A quick check of the Samoan history section of the Encyclopedia of NZ confirms that, indeed, Labour began the raids nearly two years before National came to office.

The raids continued under National, and in 1982 Muldoon stripped 100,000 Samoans of NZ citizenship. Although some individual Labour MPs opposed this, when Labour got back into power in 1984 it didn’t reverse Muldoon’s policy.

“National and Labour have an appalling history of attacking immigrants,” says Whitmore.

The Workers Party is campaigning against Labour’s Immigration Amendment Bill, and says it is a Read the rest of this entry »

Samoan workers in NZ under the Recognised Seasonal Employer scheme.  Labour, like National, has a shameful record in treating Samoans as a cheap reserve army of labour.  Photo: RNZI/Tipi Autagavaia Tipi

Samoan workers in NZ under the Recognised Seasonal Employer scheme. Labour, like National, has a shameful record in treating Samoans as a cheap reserve army of labour. Photo: RNZI/Tipi Autagavaia Tipi

This article first appeared in one of the predecessor publications to this site, namely revolution magazine, issue 21, August-October 2003.  While the names of Labour’s bigots have changed, their political position on the issue remains.

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Samoan protests for the return of their NZ citizenship point up the need for a campaign for open borders and workers’ solidarity as against Labour’s denial of Samoan (and other migrants’) rights, argues Philip Ferguson

In late March, thousands of Samoans protested in Wellington, Christchurch and in Samoa itself, calling for the repeal of the NZ Citizenship (Western Samoa) Act of 1982.  This legislation, introduced by Muldoon’s National Party government, had stripped 100,000 Samoans of NZ citizenship rights.  The abolition of these citizenship rights was part of a miserable 70-year record of NZ dealings with the Samoan people.

NZ had invaded Samoa in 1914 and was the colonial power there for the next five decades.  Just after WW1, the NZ administration bore responsibility for an influenza epidemic that wiped out a quarter of the population.  The NZ government then viciously suppressed the mass movement for Samoan independence, including gunning down unarmed independence protesters in 1929.

After independence, NZ continued to act as lord and master of Samoa and other former NZ-ruled countries in the Pacific.  For instance, in the 1970s NZ governments masqueraded as generous aid donors to the Pacific.  Yet, at that very same time, for every dollar of aid the Pacific countries of the Commonwealth received from New Zealand, they lost $3.74 in trade with this country.  Most of the NZ aid was actually spent on NZ commodities, services and personnel.  Moreover, it had little impact on expanding Pacific islands exports to NZ.  The 1970s also saw mass raids on Pacific islands ‘overstayers’ in NZ and large-scale deportations.

Last year Helen Clark apologised to Samoans for the crimes committed against them under NZ colonial rule and for the raids of the 1970s.  In response to the recent round of marches for the re-establishment of Samoans’ citizenship rights, Clark and her Ethnic Affairs minister, Chris Carter, have emphasised how much they “value” the Samoan contribution to NZ society and the Labour Party.  However, they claim, a lot of water has flowed under the bridge since 1982 and nothing can be done to reverse that legislation!

Labour’s stance should come as no surprise.  Despite masquerading as ‘friends’ of ‘ethnic communities’, Labour’s actual record, from the time it was founded, is one of campaigning for racist immigration policies when out of office and implementing them when in office.

Labour was founded in 1916 and very quickly began campaigning for the ‘White New Zealand’ Read the rest of this entry »

pb57793-300x459Our latest meeting took place at the weekend and we were privileged to be joined by John Smith, author of Imperialism in the 21st Century, one of the three books we’re studying.  We were also joined by his associate Andy Higginbottom.

John gave a presentation on several key themes of the book, which led into a discussion on the size, scale and weight of the working class in the Third World compared to the First World, where this leaves the working class (and the anti-capitalist left) in the First World, the issue of monopoly and how it does or does not relate to imperialist super-profits and much more.

Indeed, the meeting went on over several hours.

Over the next couple of weeks, we will get John’s introduction to the study meeting up on Redline, along with some articles that summarise the chapters of his book.

Our next meeting will be taking place in late November.


Paul Romer

Paul Romer

by Michael Roberts

Paul Romer is a top mainstream economist. Last month he was appointed chief economist at the World Bank.  World Bank President Jim Yong Kim described Romer’s appointment with acclaim: “We’re thrilled to have an economist as accomplished as Paul Romer join us,” said Kim.“We’re most excited about his deep commitment to tackling poverty and inequality and finding innovative solutions that we can take to scale.” For a critical review of Romer’s’ ideas and his likely influence at the World Bank, see this piece from the graduate blog, the New School Economic Review.

So it is big news among professional mainstream economics that Romer should publish just this month a working paper in which he trashes the whole basis of macroeconomics (i.e. looking at an economy as a whole), both neoclassical and Keynesian versions, in what appears to be a parting farewell to his colleagues in economic academia (leo16_romer).  This is what he says in his intro to the paper, The trouble with macroeconomics, “For more than three decades, macroeconomics has gone backwards. …Macroeconomic theorists dismiss mere facts by feigning an obtuse ignorance… Their models attribute fluctuations in aggregate variables to imaginary causal forces that are not influenced by the action that any person takes… a general failure mode of science that is triggered when respect for highly regarded leaders evolves into a deference to authority that displaces objective fact from its position as the ultimate determinant of scientific truth.”

Romer’s critique mirrors the criticisms that have been expressed by heterodox and Marxist economists for decades.  For example, see Read the rest of this entry »

Helen Kelly

Posted: October 14, 2016 by Admin in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , ,

by Don Franks


Helen Kelly

Yesterday I was hired by a university professor to sing for his class. These students were business management graduates. Their well meaning tutor wanted them to hear some union songs “to balance things up a bit”.

I told my audience the most enduring English language union songs I knew came from the IWW – Industrial Workers of the World. Founded in the USA in 1905, radical anticapitalists. The only union then and for some time to recruit women, immigrants, unskilled and all races into its ranks.

I told how the IWW had influenced early 20th century New Zealand unionism. I mentioned that several American IWW organisers had lynched by capitalist agents in the course of the struggle.

I also noted that three people in this country had been killed in the pursuit of union activity; Fredrick Evans, Ernie Abbot and Christine Clarke. To round off, I sang my song about Ernie’s murder in Wellington Trades hall.

The young business graduates suffered my presentation quietly, most fiddling with electronic devices, some kept up whispered conversation. At the end I received polite applause and left them to get on with 2016 matters of meaning to them.

Across town that day, Helen Kelly lay dying from a disease as cruel as capitalism. She had chaired AUS meetings in the lecture theatre I was singing in, and her father was leader of the union movement at the time Ernie Abbot was killed. Read the rest of this entry »