Archive for the ‘Cover ups’ Category

Protest against NZ role in invasion of Vietnam: NZ imperialism has a long record of attacking other countries and their peoples

Protest against NZ role in invasion of Vietnam: NZ imperialism has a long record of attacking other countries and their peoples

by Phil Duncan

The poppies are out again.  We’re all expected to give to the RSA and to wear one of their poppies to show our respect for NZ combatants who died in wars abroad.  But it doesn’t really take more than a second or two of reflection about Gallipoli, the centrepiece around which war is recalled in NZ and poppies worn, before a couple of questions present themselves.

Why was New Zealand invading Turkey?

What was World War One about?

And there’s the rub.

Was Turkey an imminent threat?  Did it have weapons of mass destruction pointed at little ole New Zealand?

The truth, which seems unpalatable for far too many people in this country, is that NZ was the aggressor.  We were invading them in a war that was about (more…)

Labour prime minister David Lange and pal Roger Douglas. The fourth Labour government launched the most vicious attack on workers and unions since the Depression. Union leaders put loyalty to the Labour Party ahead of the interests of the working class, as usual.

While trade union density remained similar until the Employment Contracts Act, industrial action by workers fell off dramatically under the fourth Labour government. That government viciously slashed jobs, conditions and wages and commodified large chunks of the old state sector. The union leaderships delivered up the working class to their Labour Party friends. Labour and their union pals destroyed working class resistance *before* National came in to put the icing on the cake for the capitalists.

In 2014 more blue-collar workers voted National than Labour, while large numbers of the poorest workers in the country abstained from voting.  In its ongoing attempts to present itself as ‘worker-friendly’ and trick workers into voting for it, however, the Labour Party leadership and its various mouthpieces in the union movement routinely lie to working class audiences about the record of Labour governments in relation to the trade unions and the working class in general.  They seem to rely on workers having short memories.

For instance, these creatures talk about the ‘new right’ reforms that slashed workers’ rights and living standards as if they began under National and the fourth Labour government never existed.  They also try to make out that National’s Employment Contracts Act was the only viciously anti-union legislation of that period.  Side-by-side with this, they either try to airbrush their own Labour Relations Act 1987 out of history or pretend that it was somehow helpful to unions and workers – they assume that no-one is going to dig out what that Act actually did.

As part of our ongoing From the Vaults series, we intend to run a number of pieces on the Labour Relations Act 1987.  These pieces are taken from an eight-page supplement and two-page additional insert that appeared  in the October 26, 1987 issue of the left-wing working class paper People’s Voice.  PV was published fortnightly by the now-defunct Communist Party of New Zealand.

While we at Redline would all have a number of disagreements with and criticisms of the CPNZ[1], it was the most significant force attempting to rally workers against the fourth Labour government and its repressive legislation such as the Labour Relations Act.  The CP did a solid job in this area and much of what it wrote on the decade from 1984-1993, in which both Labour and National waged full-scale class war against workers and unions, is well worth reading and studying today.  The CP was also the leading force in the trade unions taking on the ‘labour lieutenants of capital’, the bureaucrats who sabotaged workers’ resistance from their privileged positions atop unions and in cahoots with Labour.  While very few unions are still affiliated to Labour today, it remains the case that many union officials put the interests of this capitalist party ahead of the interests of workers.

The material below consists of the CPNZ’s synopsis of the 1987 Act and the main article in the supplement. 

Brief outline of the Act
  • The right of workers to organise themselves in unions with less than 1,000 members is abolished
  • Unions can compete for coverage of members of other unions which will allow employers to promote the cause of their ‘favourite’ unions
  • Second-tier wage bargaining is outlawed which takes away a traditional tactic for lifting wage levels
  • The national award system is undermined and unions are pushed in the direction of separate ‘house’ agreements which will undermine working class unity
  • Successful attempts by workers under an award to claim more from an employer than what the award says they can get will now allow the employer to scrap the award, which opens the way for back-door ‘voluntary’ unionism
  • A powerful Labour Court is established to enforce more repressive state control over trade unions
  • The right to strike over awards and agreements is restricted to within 60 days of their expiry date
  • Almost all other strikes are outlawed which severely undermines the legal right of the trade union movement to fight for the interests of its members
  • Workers in ‘essential industries’ can be ordered by the Labour Court to stop even a lawful strike
  • The Labour Court can impose vicious penalties against workers standing up against employers and the state
  • The employers are given free rein to take million-dollar law suits against unions and workers involved in strikes deemed by this Act to be ‘illegal’, which could completely bankrupt unions
  • Each employer is required to make detailed records of strikes available to Department of Labour officials which turns employers into willing spies for the state

(more…)

web-david-friedman_art_fullby Tony Greenstein

If you listen to the pro-Israel lobby group J-Street, which was formed in 2007 as a more ‘liberal’ alternative to the pro-Likud American Israel Public Affairs Committee and other liberal mainstream Zionists, then the nomination of bankruptcy lawyer, David Friedman, as the new US ambassador to Israel marks the beginning of the end of the world as we know it.

Friedman is on record as calling J-Street ‘worse than kapos’. In an article for the settler news agency Arutz Sheva,1 he responded to criticism by a liberal Zionist, Peter Beinart, by asking rhetorically: ‘are J-Street supporters really as bad as kapos?’ The answer, actually, is no. They are far worse than kapos – Jews who turned in their fellow Jews in the Nazi death camps.’

In the same op-ed, Friedman spoke of “how dangerous the Jewish left is to the State of Israel”, describing them as “the lost souls who blame Israel for not making a suicidal ‘peace’ with hateful radical Islamists hell bent on Israel’s destruction.” Bear in mind that what Friedman terms “the Jewish left” is not what most people would consider as being on the left.

The term ‘kapos’ is a favourite insult of Zionists. It used to be reserved for Jewish anti-Zionists but is now increasingly used against liberal Zionists. Anyone who is not an out-and-out racist or Jewish supremacist is in danger of being accused of being a ‘kapos’. The kapos, for those unfamiliar with the term, were prisoners in the Nazi extermination or concentration camps who were made trustees or foremen. In return for a little more food or favourable treatment, they were expected to supervise other inmates, and some of them, not all, developed a reputation for cruelty. If they didn’t beat others, they were beaten instead.

The Zionist use of the term ‘kapos’ is somewhat ironic since Zionism was a movement that voluntarily co-operated and collaborated with the Nazis. The kapos (more…)

Anna Osborne and Sonya Rockhouse still fighting for justice; photo: Joanne Carroll/Fairfax NZ

Anna Osborne and Sonya Rockhouse still fighting for justice; photo: Joanne Carroll/Fairfax NZ

by Susanne Kemp

On Saturday morning, members and supporters of the families of a number of the Pike River workers who lost their lives in the November 2010 explosions at the mine began a picket outside the mine.  Led by Sonja Rockhouse, who lost a son, and Anna Osborne, who lost a husband, the group have been protesting the decision of the mine company, state-owned Solid Energy, to permanently seal off the mine, leaving the remains of the 29 dead workers in the mine forever.

The company’s decision has been made despite the fact that there is (more…)

This talk was delivered to the Communist University, August 6-13 (2016), London.

Jesse Owens, one of the greatest track athletes of all time was shunned by Hitler and Roosevelt alike

Jesse Owens, one of the greatest track athletes of all time, was shunned by Hitler and Roosevelt alike

by The Spark

The Olympic Games in Brazil are the 31st modern Olympic Games, according to the tradition that was reinvented at the end of the 19th century. If today they supposedly promote peace, equality between people, and between men and women, they are rooted in a history of racism, sexism, nationalism and cheating.

Coubertin: Racist, Colonialist, Sexist

Baron Pierre de Coubertin instigated the first modern Olympic Games in Athens in 1896. He wanted to exalt aristocratic ideals, which were exclusively male and white. Coubertin didn’t hide his sexism. In 1912, he was already opposed to the participation of women: “The only true Olympic hero is the male individual. Female Olympics are unthinkable. They would be uninteresting, unathletic and incorrect. In the Olympic Games, their role must above all be, as in the ancient tournaments, to crown the victors.”

The first Olympic Games were reserved for whites. Coubertin, “a fanatical colonialist,” according to his own words, was a racist and open anti- (more…)

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by Don Franks

Labour, New Zealand’s oldest
political profession
mine shaft
to shagpile
inexorable procession
“Don’t go on strike – just help get us elected!”
or :
“We can’t do anything – the problem’s
worse than we suspected!”
A century, those hollow mantra served
the suited smarmy cynical deceivers well
watching them smirk today, I wish I did believe
there is a hell