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Monday, May 15, 2006

Former Student Maoists Move into Union

The National Distribution Union is, with the Service Workers Union and the Engineers Union, one of the big three NZ industrial organisations.

The NDU has also been completely under Marxist-Leninist control since its formation in the'80s.

First it was controlled by the Ken Douglas/Bill Andersen led, Socialist Unity Party. After a 1990 split in the ranks, the NDU continued under the control of Bill Andersen's, Socialist Party of Aotearoa.

In 1990, sparked by the first Iraq war, a Maoist group, "Radical Society", was formed at Auckland University. Radsoc, as it was known, dominated Auckland student politics right through the '90s and in 1995 shifted its centre of power to Victoria University. Shortlived branches were set up at other universities, with the strongest being at Waikato and Massey.


Radsoc supported the Peruvian "Shining Path", the Philippines New Peoples Army, the Nepalese Maoist insurgency, the Bouganville Revolutionary Army and at one time the Kurdish Workers Party (PKK)

Normally,traditional Marxist-Leninists and Maoists don't mix well, but three prominent ex Auckland uni Radsocers are now holding prominent positions in the NDU's Auckland HQ.

David Fleming joined the NDU as senior legal officer in 2002 after stints with the Youth Law Project and the Human Rights Commission.

Luke Coxon joined the NDU's "Growth Unit" in February 2006 after working for the Financial Sector Union.

Helen Te Hira became national education organiser for the NDU in February 2006.

Will the former Maoists change the NDU, or will the NDU convert them to orthodox Marxism-Leninism?

PS I am always interested in more info on both Radsoc and the Socialist Party of Aotearoa. If you have current or historical information about either group, please make contact via email.

19 Comments:

Blogger t selwyn said...

I'm not one to indulge or sanction this sort of McCarthyism... but:

Fleming and Te Hira were AUSA regulars. Fleming was a long-time student from the 80s, was academically inclined and an enthusiastic but largely ineffective public speaker. Te Hira had a pointless "liaison" job at AUSA from memory. She was always a bit distant (at least with me). A student political foe of mine (She won by less than 100 votes), Natalie Paltridge, was RadSoc and now is probably in all likelihood in a teacher union of some description. She had PPTA written all over her even back then. A RadSoc regular Bruce Cronin virtually ran AUSA as sort of Bruce Jesson figure through the left clique - I think he's in private IT now.

At AU Radsoc might have also included many of the hard left student politicos incl. President, Brendon Lane (who has apparently sold out to capitalism since leaving AU). There were many characters back in the early-mid 90s who were probably RadSoc. No doubt Mr GPJ Watson's encyclopaedic mind has all those details in the database.

12:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Last I heard (Feb 2005) Brendon Lane was an organiser with NZEI. Surely he hasn't crossed over to the dark side???

1:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Brendon Lane has moved on from NZEI and now works in Steve Maharey's office as an education advisor. Sadly another loss to the capitalist Labour Party machine!

3:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Had a ponder about those allegations concerning ZAP, fascism, and your good self yet Trevor? For someone who is so keen on the minutae of other people's political histories you seem to have been remarkably reticent about your own association with the extreme right via ZAP, don't you think?
http://anarchia.wordpress.com/2006/05/10/act-vice-president-to-quit/#comments

3:19 PM  
Blogger Trevor Loudon said...

Here's the deal anon. Post under your real name and I'll reply.

4:33 PM  
Anonymous sufi USA said...

Weak attempt at a red herring there anonymous. Good to see you're reading your Russell Brown though.

Trevor's work in tracking the careers of former student radicals is a great asset for centre right students.

Day in day out on every campus, centre right students will encounter political opponents from the left. Looking at the history of former student radicals and seeing what they end up doing, particularly as they march through the institutions and move into trade unions, left parties and groups, universities etc helps centre right students understand the nature, techniques and agenda of their political opponents.

It's also great fun to see a former radical who was spouting revolution years ago and is now sitting in a fat corporate somewhere workin' for da man.

Keep it coming Trev.

4:37 PM  
Blogger Trevor Loudon said...

Thanks Tim and anon. Fills in some gaps. Right on Sufi USA. Most people have no idea what these people get up to. The better you know them, the more easily you can defeat them. Always keen for more info. Does anyone know where Natalie Paltridge is now?

8:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Normally,traditional Marxist-Leninists and Maoists don't mix well..."

Why is that?

10:26 PM  
Blogger Trevor Loudon said...

The Marxist-Leninists of the Socialist party of Aotearoa coe from the old Soviet tradition.

Radsoc comes from the old Maoists/Workers Communist League/Communist Party/Pro China tradition.

Part of it is the old Russia/China rivalry thing, but there are real differences in tactics.

The M-Ls tend to go for infiltration, working inside other parties and high level deals ie the former Socialist Unity Party and Labour for instance.

The Maoists tend to more, upfront, radical voilent and "extreme".

In the last few years though, a lot of groups have buried their old ideological differences and are working together, even merging in some cases.

12:04 PM  
Anonymous weizguy said...

"Here's the deal anon. Post under your real name and I'll reply."

I'll call it - Bullshit Trevor.
The allegations were made by Russel Norman, and investigated by Asher at Anarchia.

Requiring someone who wants to know when you plan to respond to this new evidence to post under their "real name" is a red herring. I suspect you'd quite like to google them and post a nice little panty sniffing article about something they did decades ago, but their failure to give you that satisfaction doesn't give you an excuse to philibuster.

At the moment, your obfuscation is a weak attempt to deflect.

Come on - tell me to post under my own name. Sniff sniff.

1:12 PM  
Blogger Trevor Loudon said...

Calm down weizguy. I've already answered these bogus charges and will do so again as Asher clearly thinks he has caught me in a lie. I will, however do so at my leisure, not your pleasure.

1:24 PM  
Anonymous sufi usa said...

weizguy - what the hell is wrong with looking at the political past of someone who is politically active?

Journos do it all the time. Russell does it too so it must be ok. Trevor's just mining a seam which happens to be the radical left.

I'd call it research. You call it panty sniffing - but please, I'm not really interested in your hobbies.

1:41 PM  
Blogger Trevor Loudon said...

Thanks Sufi. The left thinks nothing of bringing up the past to embarrass opposition politicians. Thats perfectly legitimate according to them and I agree with that. However try shining the light on them though and don't they squeal. That's because socialist politics are fundamentally immoral, so all lefties that have some conscience left are easily pricked. Socialism advances mainly under cover, by stealth. Therefore they hate the spotlight focussed on them. I used to love spotlighting rabbits when I was a kid. Same principle really.

7:38 PM  
Blogger Heine said...

You've got 'em scared Trev. Thats why they resort to such desperate name calling and wild allegations.

7:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://indymedia.org.nz/feature/display/45086/index.php

8:30 PM  
Anonymous Cameron said...

Trevor you haven't updated your blog in a couple of days. Is everything alright?

Hope you haven't got winter cold or flu.

4:14 PM  
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