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Thursday, May 31, 2007

Callous Socialists Exploit Tragedy

Nobody knows exactly what happened. A family is grieving the loss of a wife and mother. Emotions are running high and talkback is buzzing.

The perfect opportunity for Socialist Worker to strike a blow at "capitalism". Never mind the family, never mind the facts-just another chance to stir up resentment.

Socialist Worker, its fronts-Residents Action Movement and the Solidarity Union plus a few "hangers on", made the TV news tonight. I'll bet they were so excited.

From Socialist Worker's Blog

Trade unionists and community activists from South Auckland will join forces at an angry picket at the headquarters of Mercury Energy, 602 Great South Road in Green Lane, today Thurs 31 May at 4pm, to protest the death of Folole Muliaga.

Folole died after her power was disconnected from her house by a contractor employed by Mercury Energy, leaving her family to grieve in the dark. Her family had warned and pleaded with the company beforehand that her life support required electricity. She was $170 behind her bill.

Protest organiser Joe Carolan-

"Yet again we see a so-called State Owned Enterprise put profit before people in New Zealand. Mercury Energy should be renamed Murder Energy- they are corporate bully boys who prey on the weak, old and vulnerable of South Auckland, and are no better than the corrupt money lenders who plague our communities. They rely on the fact that people feel alone and isolated- thats why we want to give them a dose of people power tomorrow they will never forget.

Trade unions like my own Solidarity Union will join community activists at Murder Energy Headquarters today, 602 Great South Rd, Greenlane. We will be calling for the sacking of Murder Energys CEOs and their blood soaked moneymen, and for proper democratic community control over the decision making to ensure that this tragedy that Folole and her family suffered is never, ever repeated. We call on the people of Auckland who are angry about this to come join us and say People Before Profit- Murder Energy- Never Again!"

Cuban Influence in Timor Welcomed

The Australian government is pleased that Jose Ramos Horta is the new president of Timor Leste. They seem to think he is a moderate.

The Communist Party of Australia seems to think differently.

From the CPA's Guardian

East Timor’s President José Ramos Horta again last week praised the humanitarian assistance his people are receiving from Cuba in the fields of medicine and education.

After pointing out that he had requested support from the governments of Australia, Indonesia and the Philippines to carry out development programs, he highlighted Cuba’s selfless assistance.

That collaboration will allow upgrading medicine in East Timor to a First World level by training doctors in Cuba, he said.

Over the past three years, a 350-strong Cuban medical brigade, made up of physicians and technicians, has been working in East Timor as well as teaching young doctors.

In addition, 500 East Timorese youths are studying medicine in Cuba, as part of a Cuban government-sponsored program that will allow East Timor to meet its public health needs by 2012.

Professors from Cuba are also contributing to the country’s literacy campaign by implementing the Cuban teaching method "Yo Si Puedo" (Yes, I Can).

In a previous meeting, Ramos Horta had said, "I thank Commander Fidel Castro for his leadership and his vision, which shows that, although our countries are distant, East Timor has always been one of his priorities in the field of medicine and health."

Just What Iraq Needs

From Iraq Communist Party Website

The Chinese Ambassador to Iraq, Mr. Chen Xiaodong, sent a message to comrade Hameed Majid Mousa congratulating him on being re-elected as Secretary of the Central Committee of the Iraqi Communist Party following the successful conclusion of its 8th National Congress in Baghdad (10-13 May 2007).

The message, dated 18th May and published in Iraqi CP's central organ Tareeq Al-Shaab (People's Path) on 22 May 2007, said: "I would like to join you in striving to strengthen the bonds of friendship and cooperation between the Chinese and Iraqi communist parties, that will advance the historic bilateral relations between China and Iraq."

Hat Tip Zionist Anti Communist

Vietnamese Communists Build Relations With Venezuela

From Cuba's La Prensa Latina

Caracas, May 30 The secretary general of the Communist Party of Vietnam, Nong Duc Mahn, was welcomed at the National Assembly of Venezuela on Wednesday.

The Vietnamese leader met at the Federal Legislative Palace with Parliament President Cilia Flores, who recalled that Venezuela has always supported the Vietnamese people's struggles.

That solidarity is stronger than ever today, when a true revolution is being made here, she said.

For his part, Nong Duc Mahn expressed the Vietnamese people's admiration for the Venezuelan people's struggle for national independence, and noted that despite the geographic distance that separates the two countries, "we always harbor sentiments of solidarity and mutual support."

The Vietnamese people will always support the Bolivarian Revolution and its struggle in defense of independence, sovereignty and social progress, he added.

The Vietnamese delegation will meet with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro, as well as members of the national committee to promote the projected United Socialist Party of Venezuela.

Nong Duc Mahn arrived in Venezuela after visiting Cuba, Chile and Brazil.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Reply to John Darroch-Capitalism and the Environment

John Darroch has impeccable green/radical credentials.

A couple of years back he was Green Party parliamentarian, Nandor Tanczos' youth MP.

He has been a leader of Auckland based anti-capitalist group, Radical Youth. He has also been active in the Green Party and Greenpeace and has studied sustainable horticulture at Unitec.

While more of an anarchist than a socialist, he is member of the Youth Advisory group of Sue Bradford's Marxist "Kotare" training school, situated at Wellsford north of Auckland.

Not surprisingly, John does not think environmentalism and capitalism are compatible.

"sound environmental practices" hmmm it is not sound to burn non renewable fuels causing climate change, it is not sound environmental practice to fish species into extinction, it is not sound to build a society based on non renewable fuels, it is not sound to poison our land and water ways with fertiliser. But of course the soundness of these acts depends on timeframe.

Viewed from the perspective of a CEO chopping down a forest or fishing a species to extinction makes perfect sense. Indeed to not do so might cost the CEO their job. Viewed from the perspective of a farmer concerned about maximising profitibality using obscene amounts of fertiliser, pesticides and herbicides probably does make perfect sense.

Destroying the land we live on is not in our long term best interest but thats exactly what what our economic system is doing. I'm not a socialist and have written on several occasions about how socialists have no answers to the environmental problems facing us but neither do you.

Stopping the destruction of the planet is a moral act, laws that allow some to get rich by permanantly degrading the land seem rather stupid. I believe that "sound environmental practice" as you put it overrides "profit maximisation"

Basically John is saying that capitalism degrades the environment because of its short term focus and its lack of accountability.

I will quote another leftist environmentalist, Brian Martin who uses an arguement I have seen often.

The market system does not work well to handle environmental problems, partly because the costs of environmental impacts are seldom included in the costs of production.[1] For example, there is no simple market mechanism to make automobile manufacturers pay for the costs of ill health due to vehicle emissions, traffic accidents, use of land for roads, greenhouse warming or wars fought to ensure access to cheap oil. These costs are borne by members of the public and the environment. So it can be said that the profits are privatised (captured by owners and users) and the environmental and health costs are "socialised" (borne by society as a whole).

This is the nub of the issue. So called "capitalism" can get away with degrading the environment because its negative effects are "socialised".

Note that word-"socialised"

Capitalism does degrade the environment at times, because "capitalism" is not "capitalist" enough-it has a "socialist" element, which "capitalists" use as a way to avoid responsibility.

One obvious example is the explosive growth of dairy farming on the Canterbury Plains. Subsidised by huge amounts of "socialised" water, Canterbury dairy farming is making big profits for farmers, but has been accused of severely degrading some streams, lowering the water table and even poisoning some wells with nitrates.

While some of these claims may be exaggerated, there seem to be some genuine concerns.

What would happen if Canterbury "capitalism" was pure? What if there was no "free" water? What if farmers could be sued by neighbours for polluting streams or draining the water table?

My guess is that the dairy industry in Canterbury would be much smaller than it is now.

Would that mean an economic downturn?

I have been told that dairy farming uses 10 times the water that arable farming uses. If the water supply was "capitalised" rather than "socialised" as it is now, what would happen?

For a start we would see much more balanced and sustainable land use. The dairy industry would surely be smaller, but farmers and entrepeneurs would find far more efficient uses for the their precious water. To have a large geographic area dominated by one form of agriculture is unhealthy. "Socialism" encourages monoculture. "Capitalism" encourages balance and diversity.

To sum up-"capitalism" degrades the environment, only to the degree that elements of the system remain "socialist".

Extend property rights into the air, the water table, the rivers, the lakes and the sea and the negative consequences of "capitalist" growth will largely be eliminated.

"Capitalism" does have the answer to environmental problems John-we simply have to eliminate the vestiges of "socialism" that are buggering things up.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Chavez Tightens Grip

From ABC News

Hat Tip Once upon A Time in the West

Venezuela's oldest private television station was pushed off the air as President Hugo Chavez's government replaced the popular opposition-aligned network with a new state-funded channel on Monday.

Radio Caracas Television shut down just before midnight Sunday as its broadcast license expired. Chavez refused to renew its license, accusing the channel of "subversive" activities.

The new channel, TVES, launched its transmissions with artists singing pro-Chavez music, then carried an exercise program and a talk show, interspersed with government ads proclaiming, "Now Venezuela belongs to everyone."

Thousands of government supporters reveled in the streets as they watched the changeover on large TV screens, seeing RCTV's signal go black and then be replaced by a TVES logo featuring Venezuela's national colors. Others launched fireworks and danced to the classic salsa tune "Todo tiene su final" "Everything Has Its End."

In the countdown to the midnight deadline, thousands of RCTV backers banged pots in protest and played recordings of sirens. Some fired gunshots into the air.

Earlier Sunday, police broke up an opposition protest using a water cannon and tear gas and later clashed with protesters who set afire trash heaps in affluent eastern Caracas. Police said some protesters fired shots, and others threw rocks and bottles. Police said 11 officers were injured.

Inside the studios of RCTV the sole opposition-aligned TV station with nationwide reach disheartened actors and comedians wept and embraced in the final minutes on the air.

They bowed their heads in prayer, and presenter Nelson Bustamante declared: "Long live Venezuela! We will return soon."

Chavez says he is democratizing the airwaves by turning the network's signal over to public use. His opponents condemned the move as an assault on free speech.

Germany, which holds the European Union presidency, expressed concern that Venezuela let RCTV's license expire "without holding an open competition for the successor license." It said the EU expects that Venezuela will uphold freedom of speech and "support pluralism."

Founded in 1953, RCTV had broadcast talk shows, sports, soap operas and a popular comedy program that poked fun at presidents including Chavez for decades. It had some 3,000 employees, including 200 journalists.

RCTV was regularly the top channel in viewer ratings, but Chavez accused the network of "poisoning" Venezuelans with programming that promotes capitalism, violating broadcast laws and other infractions.

The government promises TVES will be more diverse, buying 70 percent of its content from independent Venezuelan producers. It will carry sports, news and an educational program for children emphasizing socialist values, as well as foreign-made programs such as National Geographic documentaries.

"We've come here to start a new television with the true face of the people, the face that was hidden, the face that they didn't allow us to show," said Roman Chalbaud, a pro-Chavez filmmaker appointed by the government to TVES' board of directors.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Kill A Cricketer for the Revolution!!!!

Not content with murdering policemen, train inspectors and local politicians, India's Maoist insurgents are now targeting sportsmen. perhaps the NZ Workers Party which supports these scum, could tell us how this is justified? How about it Don... Byron?

From Naxal Terror Watch

The Associated Press
May 27, 2007

NEW DELHI: Police are investigating a letter allegedly written by Maoist rebels threatening to kill two of India's top cricketers because they represent the "elite class," a newspaper reported Sunday.

The letter singles out captain of the Indian team Rahul Dravid and wicketkeeper Mahendra Dhoni, as well as three top cricket officials, and was found Friday during a police raid on a rebel hideout in the eastern state of Chhattisgarh, the Hindustan Times reported.

The handwritten letter said a group of rebels from Chhattisgarh and neighboring Jharkand state had decided to kill the cricketers, and that rebels had tracked the movements of Dhoni in his hometown of Ranchi, Jharkand's capital, the paper said.

The threatened officials were Sharad Pawar, president of India's cricket board and federal agriculture minister, and Niranjan Shah and Rajiv Shukla, both well-known officials of the cricket board, it said.

"All five are promoting cricket, a sport of the elite class, and also leading a luxurious life at the expense of the hard-earned money of the common man," the letter said, according to the newspaper.

Solid Energy Battles Greens and Marxist Teens

Green Co-leader, Russel Norman's outrage against state owned mining company Solid Energy's infiltration of the Save Happy Valley Coalition is understandable given his party's longstanding support of the protestors.

Green co-leader Jeanette Fitzsimons and MP's Meteria Turei and Nandor Tanczos

Several Green MPs, plus Russel himself have supported the campaign. Some Green socialists from Canterbury, including Christine Dann and Allan Leifting have also supported the protestors.

It's no surprise that many of the protestors are anarchists or socialists including apparently, long time protest leader and spokesman, Frances Mountier.

The product of a well known Christchurch activist family, Frances Mountier has packed a lot of agitation into her 19 odd years.

Though not known to be Green Party member, Mountier has close links to Green MP Sue Bradford and several other Green party activists involved with the Kotare School situated at Wellsford, north of Auckland.

The Kotare School is openly modelled on the Communist Party USA linked Highlander School in Tennessee, famous for training martin Luther King, Rosa Parks and many other prominent "civil rights" activists.

Kotare's Green Party trustees include MP Sue Bradford (Deputy Chair), Karen Davis (Treasurer) and Sue Berman. Gordon Jackman another trustee is the partner of Green party activist, Catherine Delahunty, who tutors at the school.

Several Kotare personnel, including Sue Bradford and Quentin Jukes have Workers Communist league backgrounds. The school teaches "social activism" based on the teachings of Brazilian Marxist, Paolo Friere. It has trained many prominent youth activists, including John Darroch from Auckland Radical Youth and Wellington Palestine Group activist Tali Williams.

According to Kotare's Spring 2006 newsletter

Kotare has a Youth Advisory group of people under 25 who have volunteered to give us feedback on how we are working generally and also specifically with younger people. We are meeting with them on November 11 and 12 to discuss our work. The advisory group members are Tali Williams from Wellington, Frances Mountier from Christchurch, John Darroch from South Auckland and Tui Armstrong from Whangarei. These young people have all participated in Kotare activities since the age of 15 and have active networks and great ideas!

So Frances Mountier has trained at a Green Party linked Marxist training school since the age of 15!

The phrase "brainwashed" comes to mind.

The real story here is that Solid Energy is fighting not just a bunch of irresponsible young protestors. It is also battling the Green Party, including several of its leaders and strategies learnt in Sue Bradford's Marxist training school.

One can hardly blame them for fighting back with a little bit of espionage.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Is Russel Norman Being Hypocritical Over "Infiltration" Allegations?

I heard Green Party co-leader, Russel Norman on Radio NZ this morning, angrily denouncing Solid Energy for infiltrating a spy into the Save Happy Valley environmental protest group.

Russel called for the sacking of Solid Energy's management and repeated this call on a post on the Green Party's FrogBlog.

I find this a little bit rich, coming from Russel. From the mid '80s to the the early '90s, Russel was a committed member of Australia's largest Marxist-Leninist organisation, the Democratic Socialist Party.

The DSP and its former incarnation, the Socialist Workers Party are notorious in Australia for their relentless infiltration and manipulation of other organisations.

I quote from A History of the DSP by Alvaro Recoba

Practicing the Trotskyist method of fusion or infiltration, the DSP has constantly moved its cadre force into and out of issues and movements as it judges the worth of that particular issue or movement to the benefit of the DSP.

There are numerous examples, one being their attempts to take over the Nuclear Disarmament Party of Australia (NDP), which whilst being unsuccessful, lead to the complete loss of confidence in the NDP by the Australian people and its quick demise as a force for change. More recently they attempted to infiltrate the Greens Party, but again were unsuccessful and in response the Greens movement adopted a resolution banning members of the DSP from membership of the Greens.

DSP National Executive member, Lisa McDonald outlined DSP influence in the Australian Greens in this address to the January 1996 Socialist Activists and Educational Conference in Sydney.

The DSP threw its resources and energies into building the local Green parties, played a key role in the formation of the Victorian Green Alliance, the South Australian Green Alliance, the Queensland Green Alliance, the ACT Green Democratic Alliance, the NSW Green Alliance and around half a dozen local Green parties in NSW, including in the working-class areas of western Sydney where the Greens' base was weakest. All of these groups, registered as separate parties with the federal and/or state electoral commissions (some in the name of DSP members), and operating with total autonomy in policy and campaigns, were united simply by an explicit commitment to the four principles of the German Greens.

Steve Painter was a DSP activist from the mid '80s until his resignation in 1989. He then moved into NSW green politics and was in a unique position to observe the DSP infiltration of and eventual expulsion from the Australian Greens in 1989/91.

I quote him from the Marxism Mailing List Archive

"As the Greens organisation developed into more of a party and less of an alliance or coalition, the continued presence of the DSP became more problematic. Could a DSP member genuinely serve as an office-bearer or candidate for The Greens? Of those remaining actively involved, more began to think not. At this time, the DSP changed the name of its weekly newspaper from "Direct Action" to "Green Left" and let it be known that they were prepared to "dissolve" their organisation and work through the Greens as their primary political vehicle.

"It is not clear to me how bona fide the intention to dissolve was. Jim Percy
(DSP leader, New Zeal) had a concept of joining 'the swamp' and then, over time, 'draining the swamp'. It seemed quite reckless to gamble with the name of their newspaper in the way they did. To gamble with the organisation seemed hard to believe. There would have been some society or other organisational structure remaining that would influence ex-DSP members' activities, I am sure.

"With pressure to exclude the DSP coming from some key figures, mostly from other states, a delegated national meeting was held at the Sydney Earth Exchange in mid-1991 to discuss a possible national organisation. Agreement with proscription of other political parties was a prerequisite for attendance, although some DSP turned up anyway. Whilst being an excruciating meeting, held in a hot, noisy room, the main outcome was that further national meetings would require participating organisations to implement proscription.

"Shortly afterwards was the infamous NSW Greens 'stack, where 12 DSP members turned up at a regular administrative meeting (when one or two, at best, might usually attend) and proceeded to decide organisational changes to their benefit, including shoring up their access to The Greens registration.

'Ownership of the NSW Greens turned on the colour of the Registered Officer, the person recognised by the Electoral Act as the party representative able to endorse candidates. Previously, an election for RO had been tied, so it was held jointly between Murray Addison and Paul Fitzgerald. Addison, I believe, was a secret member of the DSP at this point. When the stack was played out and Addison revealed his allegiance, the non-DSP wrote to the Electoral Commission requesting that Addison be removed as RO since he served another party which was acting destructively. After a week or two of uncertainty, Addison was removed.

Murray Addison was Secretary of the NSW Greens in 1991. In 2000 he attended the DSPs Marxism 2000 conference in Australia. In 2001 he was Treasurer for the Mt Albert branch (Auckland) of the Alliance Party. The NZ Alliance Party, was from its formation in 1991/2 to its near destruction a decade later, a sister party of the DSP.

Interestingly, Russel Norman left the DSP in the early '90s (though continuing to write for its paper Green Left Weekly until the late'90s). In the mid '90s he travelled to NZ specifically to study the Alliance Party for his Phd. His interest was more than academic. He became active in the Alliance and at one point edited its Auckland newsletter, until leaving with the Greens when they went out on their own in 1997.

Of course their is no evidence that Russel has done any infiltrating himself. However for several years he was active in an organisation that practised manipulation of other organisations as a matter of course.

Maybe its a case of "let he who is without sin cast the first stone"?

I'm sure Russel wouldn't want to be labelled a hypocrite.

Nicaragua and North Korea, Comrades Again

"Non-communist" Nicaragua has recently re-established doplomatic relations with Russia and North Korea.

Self proclaimed "born again Democrat," Daniel Ortaga never forgets a comrade.

From Korea News Service

Pyongyang, May 25 President Kim Il Sung had given material and mental support, solidarity and assistance to us, and this greatly contributed to the victory of the Sandinist revolution.

Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega Saavedra said this when meeting with the DPRK ambassador to Nicaragua.

The DPRK's access to deterrent for self-defence is a clear manifestation of the independent stand and this greatly encourages us, he noted, stressing that the Songun policy of Kim Jong Il is very just.

Expressing support and solidarity with the Korean people in the struggle to achieve the independent and peaceful reunification of the country without interference of foreign forces under the banner of the June 15 North-South Joint Declaration, he affirmed the will to further develop the friendly relations between the two countries and strengthen cooperation in the international arena.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Venezuelan Tyrant Threatens Opposition

It's getting harder and harder for Western socialists to defend their idol, Hugo Chavez. He is rapidly becoming just another third world Marxist dictator.

From Cuba's La Prensa Latina

Caracas, May 25 President of Venezuela Hugo Chavez warned the oligarchy of is nation that "if it dares to attack again, it will get the strongest response from the Government, the Armed Forces and the people."

In Friday s speech at an air base to present the Simon Bolivar air group of eight Russian-made Sukhoi-30 planes, Chavez reiterated that concession won't be renewed to private RCTV, the main promoter of a fierce anti-government campaign from the opposition.

He said the economic group controlling the channel has maintained a real tyranny, to the point of attacking public peace through terrorism, coup and economic sabotage.

The president particularly warned those who use "generate uneasiness within the Armed Forces" and denounced a false report on alleged surveillance of military commanders.

"I absolutely believe in the Armed Forces and all its members, and the people believe in them, love them and respect them too, because they have joined the people to defend the country's sovereignty, government, Revolution and democratic institutions," he stressed.

Chavez called on all the people to be alert to prevent any destabilizing action.

Communist Vietnam Builds Ties With Socialist Latin America

From Cuba's La Prensa Latina

Havana, May 25 (Prensa Latina) Vietnam s Communist Party general secretary Nong Duc Manh expressed in this capital his country s willingness to strengthen ties of brotherhood with Cuba and broaden relations with Latin America.

Manh was welcomed at the capital s airport by Cuba s Communist Party Secretariat members Esteban Lazo and Fernando Remirez de Estenoz, as well as Government Minister Ricardo Cabrisas, with whom he held talks for almost two hours, after arriving in the island in transit for Chile.

Chile, where he is expected stay from May 25-27, is the first stage of his tour of Latin America, which will later take him to Brazil on May 27-29, Venezuela on May 29-31, and Cuba on June 1-3.

Shortly before leaving Hanoi, the Vietnamese leader told Prensa Latina that his nation will foster ties of friendship and cooperation with Latin American countries, for the sake of the peoples welfare and prosperity.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Don Clarke Deserves a Little Scrutiny

National MP Murray McCully examines some of the $369 million this country wasted on "foreign aid" last year.

From McCully & Co

New Zealand taxpayers will be delighted to hear that last year’s $369 million purchased, for example, a programme to promote gender equity in the greater Mekong Region. Another far-sighted and highly relevant initiative involved “poverty elimination” amongst indigenous people in rural Nicaragua. And Nicaragua, we assume, was identified for sentimental reasons, as the venue at which the majority of the Cabinet will have attended Socialist International Conferences during their formative political years.

Last year’s $369 million also purchased, on behalf of New Zealand taxpayers, “poverty elimination” programmes in the western states of China. Mr Peters and his colleagues appear not to have paused to consider the significant irony of pumping New Zealand aid money into China, which in turn is pumping its own aid money, in increasingly lavish doses, into the Pacific.

And if you really want to get Mr Peters looking prickly and defensive, just ask him about the $500,000 cheque he authorised to be spent in the Palestinian Authority in March last year soon after Hamas had won the national elections. Yes, that would be the same Hamas that was still promising to wipe out Israel and threatening to use violent means to achieve this objective.

Murray McCully is right to criticise such programmes, but the real story here is who directs this money to such dubious uses and why?

One person who deserves some scrutiny is Don Clarke.

Since 2002 Clarke has been director of NZAID’s Global Group and consequently has had huge influence in determining the destination of hundreds of millions of NZ taxpayers dollars.

I have already covered Clarke's long term links with Maoism and the former Workers Communist League here.

It is interesting that McCully singled out projects in China, Nicaragua, Vietnam, and Palestine as all were major focuses of Workers Communist League activity. Clarke himself has some affinity with several of those areas.

In the early "70s, Maoist students controlled NZUSA and oganised several student delegations to China. In April 1975 it was agreed at an NZUSA meeting that Dunedin CORSO activist, Don Clarke, would be chairman of the 1975 China trip selection panel. Several of these delegates went on to join the WCL.

Nicaragua became a big focus for the WCL in the '80s. Several WCL members travelled there, many with "coffee picking" brigades.

Don Clarke was a member of the first NZ brigade to Nicaragua in 1986/87.

In March 1990, Clarke, representing the "Nicaragua Must Survive Campaign" wrote a full page article for the Workers Communist League's "Unity" newspaper on the recent electoral defeat of the Sandinista government.

Vietnam became a big focus for the WCL in the late '80s. Several WCL supporters were involved in the Vietnam Action Information Network.

Clarke was a spokesman for VAIN and its descendants from 1990 to at least 1994.

My recent post on the Wellington Palestine Group shows that Clarke's WCL friends also maintained a long interest in Palestinian affairs.

Should it be a matter of concern that a life long socialist activist, almost certainly a former member of NZ's most influential Maoist sect, the WCL, should now be in such an influential position?

Don Clarke's agency is sending hundreds of millions of your dollars to countries, many of which he has shown past ideological sympathy for. That is no crime, but at least some of that money seems to be ending up with some very dodgy organisations.

Are there some obvious questions here?

Roy On Selective Prosecutions

ACT MP Heather Roy on selective prosection of MPs

After months of waiting for the results of a police investigation former Labour MP Taito Phillip Field, who is now an independent MP formally received the news this week that Police are seeking leave from the High Court to proceed with 14 charges of bribery by a Member of Parliament.

In light of the now long string of MPs who have been investigated by the police since Labour came to power I asked the following question in Parliament on Thursday:

Heather Roy: Is not the real reason the Prime Minister has changed her mind about Taito Phillip Field that he has fallen out of her favour and that a pattern is emerging in the use of police discretion when prosecuting MPs, as evidenced by the police not prosecuting the Prime Minister for art fraud, or dangerous driving through South Canterbury, assault on a minor by Minister Benson-Pope, assault by Minister Hodgson, breach of the Companies Act by Minister Parker, and electoral fraud by the Labour Party, as opposed to the charging of Shane Ardern for driving a tractor, Nick Smith for standing up for a constituent, Donna Awatere Huata for fraud, and Taito Phillip Field for bribery, and what is her part in this pattern?

Michael Cullen, answering on behalf of the Prime Minister was able only to provide an incoherent answer, in part because his Labour colleagues were making so much noise in the debating chamber it was hard to hear.

Each case must be judged on its merits but regardless of Mr Field's innocence or guilt the pattern is hard to ignore. We cannot allow a situation to develop whereby the government's opponents are the only ones to face the long arm of the law. The separation of justice and government is fundamental to a free society.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Jan Farr-Wairarapa's Retired Revolutionary Writer

These days Jan Farr writes children's stories and divides her time between her Wellington and Wairarapa Homes.

Her husband Don works for the Council of Trade Unions while her son Gareth is a well known musician.

Writing is her main interest now, but once it was socialist revolution.

In 1980 Jan Farr was involved in the Auckland literary and theatre scene and was secretary of the Writers Guild.

Prime Minister Rob Muldoon released his famous list of 32 members of the Socialist Unity Party involved in the union movement. Jan Farr was the only woman on the list.

When questioned by the press, Farr claimed she was not a paid up member of the SUP, but was a supporter. By 1983 however, Farr had replaced a young Jim Marr as editor of the SUP's "Tribune", a position she was to hold for 10 years.

On the 30th of April 1984, SUP president, the late George Jackson penned a letter to the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.

"We thank you for the invitatation to send 4 mid level cadres to the USSR to study CPSU leadership at the levels closest to workers"...

Jackson named the four lucky invitees as Jan Farr, Ritchie Gillespie, Lesley Douglas and Doug McCallum. All but Farr were to arrive on the 8th May by SU 558.

"Comrade Farr will leave earlier to attend the Pravda meeting and then to have discussions involving the role and organisation of the press. As she is the editor of our newspaper NZ Tribune, her programmes will need to be need to geared around the role of the press linked with the role of the Party"

This study was probably at the Communist Party's huge "Lenin's Institute for Higher Learning" on Leningradski Prospekt, Moscow, but may have occurred in one the Soviet Union's many other training institutes for foreign communists.

By 1985, Jan Farr was secretary of the Auckland City branch of the SUP. In 1986 she was active in the Coalition for Democracy in Fiji. In 1988 she toured Vietnam as guest of the Vietnam Journalists Association.

That year, Farr was also a member of the SUP's Peace and Solidarity Commission, which oversaw the peace movement and links to foreign communist parties and revolutionary movements.

In December 1988 Farr was interviewed in the Communist Party of Britain's newspaper "Morning Star". She was described as the "communist editor" of "Tribune" and an executive committee member of the NZSUP.

The SUP was working hand in glove with the left of the Labour Party at the time to consolidate the union movement. This was designed to both entrench SUP power and to lock in union support behind the Labour Government-a difficult job in the "Rogernomics" era.

"Last year Mr Lange stated that by 1990 all unions must have at least 1000 members to be legally recognised. He positively pushed the idea of amalgamation to improve bargaining - something we in the SUP see as a necessary step. It was shortly after this that the CTU was formed. . . For years we have been encouraging industry-wide planning but until the recent crisis nobody in the movement really knew what the problem looked like. That's certainly changing now. . . Our basic position is that we are not in a revolutionary siuation yet and what we need now is the ability to intervene at the macro-economic level of production."

Jan Farr was on the Central Committee of the SUP well into the '90s and faithfully propagandised the "party line" while the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe underwent their stage managed "democratic" changes.

In April 1991 penned an interesting article for Tribunes's forum: "The problems facing Eastern Europe (in which I do not believe communism has been defeated) may show that Marx was observing a natural law which no amount of wishful thinking can change. [That law is the forces of production law]..."

In the early '90s, Farr was active in the radical Wellington Palestine Group.

After leaving Tribune in 1993, Jan Farr worked for several years alongside her husband Don, in FINSEC, the Financial Sector union.

Once Jan Farr rubbed shoulders with some of the world's leading revolutionaries. Now she reads stories to primary school kids.

One wonders if she still holds fast to the socialist dream?

US Communist Target Minorities

The Communist Party USA is in no doubt that it's future lies in manipulating minority groups against the US "mainstream".

It's called "National Question" politics-the deliberate targeting of minorities in order to foster division and "social change"-ie revolution..

From the CPUSA's 2007 Party and Press Building Plan

Racially and nationally oppressed communities

A decisive part of the core forces for social change in this country are the communities of the racially and nationally oppressed people. They also represent a key part of the multiracial, multinational and multi-lingual U.S. working class. African Americans, Mexican Americans, Puerto Rican Americans and other Latinos, Asian Americans, Native Americans, Arab Americans and others face particular oppression under U.S. capitalism and they also bring their own particular experiences, needs and issues to the struggle for equality and democracy. In this connection we plan to.

• Hold discussions in key districts about developments in the communities of the racially oppressed, the struggle for equality, and approaches to building the Party in those communities, starting with a meeting of the club (where one exists) to discuss its status and potential for growth.

• Hold public meetings in six or more such communities with the goal of increasing PWW subscriptions, developing new contacts and recruitment.

• Increase bilingual English/Spanish materials as well as look at other ways to make the Party fully bilingual and recruit Spanish-speakers

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Don Carson-Palestinian Propagandist

Don Carson has a "respectable" job as communications manager for the Hutt City Council. He has a long media career behind him. Many would recognise him as Radio NZ's long time rural reporter, Wool Board corporate communications manager and as frontman for TV3's "No 8 Wired" farming programme.

A good "salt of the earth" rural conservative?


Since his student days at Victoria University, Carson has been one of this country's most active Marxist radicals. He has allegedly travelled to to Beirut to meet the PLO, and to North Vietnam as guest of the communist government.

At one point Prime Minister Muldoon used parliamentary privilige to label Carson as a "traitor".

Carson has been a staunch champion of the radical Palestinian cause for three decades and a mainstay of the Wellington Palestine Group.

In the early '70s Carson was active in several Maoist leaning groups at Victoria University such as the Student Anti War Committee, the Organisation to Halt Military Service (OHMS) and Halt All Racist Tours (HART).

In 1972, Carson stood for election to the Victoria University Student exective and won the position of Sports Officer as part of a "left victory".

By 1975 Carson was chairman of the Marxist-Leninist controlled Wellington Committee on Vietnam and was International VP of the Maoist controlled NZ University Students Association.

In 1976, while representing NZUSA in Thailand at a meeting of the Asian Students Association, Carson moved a resoltion that Israel be expelled from ASA.

While never publicly admitting membership in the Wellington Marxist-Leninist Organisation or its descendant, the Workers Communist League, Carson was very close to both organisations and participated in several Maoist dominated groups.

In 1977 Carson was Wellington contact for Campaign Against Nuclear Warships (CANWAR). He also served on HART's national council alongside several old Maoist university friends and known Workers Communist League members.

By August 1982, Carson was spokesman for the WCL dominated, Wellington Palestine Committee and condemned the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in the pages of the 27th August edition of "Socialist Action".

In July 1987 Carson spoke, at the WCL/Socialist Unity Party/Socialist Action League sponsored, South Pacific Conference for Peace and Justice in Central America. Representing the Wellington Palestine Group, Carson described Israel and South Africa as props for dictatorship.

On August 10, 1990 Carson appeared on TV3's Nightline as a Middle East "expert" giving his opinions on Iraq/Kuwait crisis. Three days later he was interviewed in the SUP's "Tribune" (edited by his WPG colleague Jan Farr) on the Gulf crisis. "Don Carson, who has an active and long term interest in the Middle East, discussed the history of Iraq with Tribune."

On January 18 1991, Carson, described as a Palestine Liberation Organisation supporter, was interviewed by Bill Ralston on TV3 about outbreak of war in Kuwait.

On 1991 March 11, 1991, Carson wrote an article in "Tribune" on the US action in the gulf and the US's refusal to link the invasion of Kuwait to the "Palestinian Question."

In early 1996, Carson spoke to the neo-Maoist linked Victoria University Human Rights Group on his latest visit to Palestine.

In the early '00s, the Maoist leaning "Workers Party" joined with some Christchurch based Trotskyists to form the Anti-Capitalist Alliance (now cleverly re-named the Workers Party).

Carson along with some former Workers Communist League members are closely linked to the new group.

At Labour Weekend 2002, Carson, spoke to the ACA national educational conference on US policy in the Middle East.

In June 2004, Carson addressed the ACA's "Peoples Resistance" conference in Auckland.

Don Carson is scheduled to speak on Palestine at the Workers Party's Marxism 2007 conference in Auckland, starting June 1st.

Some student radicals change and become respectable. Some just become "respectable".

Right on Rodney!!!

This is the kind of talk that makes me proud to be an ACT member.

From ACT leader Rodney Hide's Blog

The Centre for Independent Studies has complained a Taxpayer Bill of Rights capping government spending would breach Parliamentary Sovereignty.

But who should be sovereign? There are three immediate choices: a king, parliament or the individual. I think the individual should be sovereign. I believe that human beings have rights independent of parliament and that parliament’s job is to uphold these rights, not to grant them. These rights exit irrespective of whether a king or a parliament recognises them.

Why should the rather weird concept of parliamentary sovereignty trump a person’s right to their property and life?

Besides, a taxpayer rights bill would not overturn parliamentary sovereignty. Sadly, a simple majority could overturn it like it can overturn all rules and all rights in New Zealand.

Monday, May 21, 2007

The Wellington Palestine Group

The Marxist/Muslim alliance is not new, it has been brewing since the 1920s.

Even in New Zealand it has been a feature of the local radical scene since at least the early '80s.

Probably the longest lived leftist/Islamic solidarity group in NZ has been the Wellington Palestine Group.

Militantly anti Israel and pro-"Palestine" , the WPG has been pushing the Marxist-Leninist line on Middle Eastern affairs for at least a quarter of a century.

Prominent members during that time have included;

Alick Shaw In 1982, the future deputy mayor of Wellington was a member of the Workers Communist League and the Wellington Palestine Group. Shaw spoke at a forum organised by the Maoist Victoria University Progrressive Students Association on the "Day of Land" on the Palestinian struggle.

Shirleen Casey Named in a 1981 Security Intelligence report as a probable member of the Workers Communist League and a member of the Wellington Palestine support group.

In 1987 Casey visited the Palestinian Union of Womens Committees and the Union of Palestinian Medical Relief Committees. In August 1988 she attended the 4th Palestine Conference at Te Rau-Oriwa Marae, Christchurch.

Eileen Cassidy Named in a 1981 Security Intelligence report as a probable member of the Workers Communist League and a member of Wellington Palestine support group. Her daughter Lindy was a confirmed member of the WCL's predecessor, the Wellington Marxist-Leninist Organisation.

In August 1990 Cassidy wrote two articles in the SUP's "Tribune", one on the WPG and one entitled "Israel fuels war in the Horn of Africa."

On 26th April 2000, this ad appeared in a wellington publication - "something to celebrate? Israeli diplomats have invited NZ politicians and various 'notables' to celebrate the 53rd anniversary of the founding of the State of Israel. The Wellington Palestine Support Group and other 'notables' will be presenting an alternative viewpoint, join them from 12 noon to 2pm, outside the James Cook Centra Hotel, 153 The Terrace. For more information contact Eileen Cassidy, tel.... "

Jan Farr A confirmed member of WPG in the early '90s. In the late 80s, Farr was a member of the pro-Soviet Socialist Unity Party's Central Committee and Commission on Peace and Solidarity. She also edited the party's newspaper "Tribune" from the early '80s until 1993.

In October 1990 Oct 8, Farr an wrote article in Tribune "Why Did Mike Moore turn down PLO offer?", on the Gulf crisis. "The United States has been sabre rattling since the crisis began. It says much for Saddam Hussein's restraint that we are not now involved in a full scale chemical war in the Middle East."

Nadia El Maroufi An Invercargill raised Palestinian. El Maroufi was educated at Otago and Canterbury universities where she was active in Palestinian solidarity work.

She spent some time in Palestine supporting the cause and during the late '90s was active in the WPG.

Serena Moran In 1997, Moran was one 75 people arrested after a student protest in the grounds of parliament. In September 2000 she was one of 8 Wellingtonians arrested at an anti capitalism protest in Cuba Street.

In 2006 she was a confirmed member of the WPG.

Tali Williams In 1998 Williams was on the executive of the Marxist controlled UNITE union. She was also active in the National Youth Network, the junior wing of Sue Bradford's People's Network.

In September 2000, Williams was one of 8 Wellingtonians arrested at an anti capitalism protest in Cuba Street.

Lately she has been a trustee of Sue Bradford's Kotare Marxist training school situated near Wellsford.

In March this year, Williams, representing the WPG spoke at a demonstration in Wellington where she linked the situations in Palestine and in Iraq.

Omar Khamoun A Wellington taxi-driver and WPG spokesman.

In April this year he signed a Socialist Worker organised statement, condemning the stereotyping of Muslims in NZ.

He claims to be a cousin of Hassan Kemmoun allegedly a member of the Marxist North African organisation Party for Democracy and Socialism (PADS).

How Australian Communists Manipulated the Aboriginal Rights Movement

Australian Marxist Journal Green Left Weekly has published an interesting article on Communist Party control of the Aboriginal rights movement.

The left seems to now think that it is safe to take credit for their influence in movements which changed our societies forever.

While vehemently denying it at the time, communists played the leading role in the US Civil Rights Movement, the South African anti-Apartheid struggle, the NZ Maori land movement and of course the Aboriginal movement of Australia.

The communists took good causes and manipulated them in the interests of their Soviets masters.

That they did much good along the way was incidental, but fortunate for all of us in the long run.

Read the whole article here.

It illustrates very well how a small, co-ordinated group of Marxist-Leninists can swing a whole country to their way of thinking.

If you think those days are gone, consider the Climate Change debate, the Peace and anti nuclear movements and the Islamic radical appeasement campaign.

Who do you think are manipulating those movements..the Boy Scouts?

How the 1967 referendum was won

Norm Dixon

May 27 marks the 40th anniversary of the overwhelming victory of the 1967 referendum, in which almost 91% of the Australian people voted to give the federal government the constitutional power to override the brutal, degrading racist laws of the states under which Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders were tormented. The federal government now had the power to make specific laws in respect to the Indigenous people. The Australian people had sent a clear signal that it was time for Canberra to make laws, introduce programs and provide the necessary resources to end the racial oppression of Indigenous Australians...

It is promised that the “honoured guests” of the ceremony will be the surviving members of the Federal Council for the Advancement of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders (FCAATSI), the national organisation that spearheaded the campaign for the referendum. Unfortunately, it is unlikely that the real history of the referendum movement will emerge through the fog of official platitudes and cynical celebration: that the referendum, and its overwhelming endorsement by the Australian people, was the product of decades of determined political struggle by a “black-red alliance” — an Indigenous-led alliance of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations with the left and labour movements.

Founders of the Victorian-based Australian Aborigines League (AAL) and the NSW Aborigines Progressive Association (APA) were active trade unionists and some were members of the Communist Party of Australia (CPA), a party that had campaigned for Indigenous people’s rights since its formation in 1920. Through the Depression, close links developed between CPA and Indigenous activists through trade union struggles and the activities of the Unemployed Workers Movement...

During the 1940s and 1950s, a series of struggles put Aboriginal rights on the national political agenda, and exposed to the wider Australian population just how severe the federal and state authorities’ racist restrictions were on Indigenous people’s civil and political rights.

The most significant struggle of the 1940s was the epic 1946-49 Pilbara Aboriginal stock workers’ strike. In July 1944, WA CPA member Don McLeod reported to the CPA central committee that Indigenous leaders — including Clancy McKenna, Captain, Dougal, Dooley Bin Bin and Kitchener — were travelling from station to station preparing workers for action. On April 27, 1946, Aboriginal stock workers began walking off 20 stations. Police immediately arrested McKenna, Dooley and McLeod. Four-hundred strikers marched on the jail armed with crowbars and hammers, forcing McLeod’s release.

The Committee for the Defence of Native Rights (CDNR) in Perth, led by CPA members, held several successful meetings, including a 400-strong public meeting. The CDNR galvanised support from trade unions, women’s organisations, churches and local authorities, as well as winning national and international support.

In March 1949, as the strike approached its fourth year, police arrested 30 strikers. In response, Aboriginal workers walked off most of the region’s remaining stations, bringing the pastoral industry in the Pilbara to a halt. The Seamen’s Union in June banned the handling of wool from the stations. The CPA’s international connections resulted in the workers’ cause gaining publicity throughout the world, culminating in October 1949 with Soviet foreign minister Andrei Vishinksky denouncing Australia before the United Nations for flouting the Aboriginal workers’ human rights. As a result of the sustained pressure — it was Australia's longest continuous strike — the WA Native Affairs Department withdrew its support for the pastoralists.

In the Northern Territory in the late ‘40s, the CPA-led North Australian Workers Union (NAWU) campaigned for equal wages for Aboriginal pastoral workers and backed strikes by Aboriginal workers living in Darwin’s apartheid-like “townships” — the Berrimah and Bagot compounds.

Aboriginal NAWU organiser and communist Joe McGinness attended the 1951 Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) Congress seeking support. NT and WA CPA activists collaborated with their comrades in the capital cities and in other states, as well as with existing and new Aboriginal rights organisations. More than 30 unions expressed solidarity with the NAWU, and financial support was provided by state and federal unions, trades and labour councils and the ACTU.

As a 1962 ASIO document moaned: “the CPA press gave much publicity to every incident involving the aboriginal people … This publicity included allegations of colour prejudice; appeals to trade unions to help aborigines both financially and politically; protests at evictions of aborigines from houses; ‘historical’ articles; attacks on governments for implementing the policy of ‘full rights’ too slowly; allegations that “wealthy squatters, pastoral companies and mining monopolists are furious at the advances made towards equal pay, education and other reforms; … approval of strikes by aboriginals; and the building, among Communist-controlled trade unions like the Waterside Workers’ Federation, the Miners’ Federation and the Seamen’s Union, of a campaign for full citizenship rights for all aborigines.”

By the late 1950s, there were broad-based Aboriginal rights support organisations in most states. A number of key Indigenous leaders were members of the CPA and/or militant trade unionists. These included Faith Bandler, wharfie Chicka Dixon and building worker Ray Peckham, who were active in the Australian Aboriginal Fellowship (AAF) formed in Sydney in 1956, and Kath Walker (better known as Oodgeroo Noonuccal) and Gladys O’Shane from Queensland. Joe McGinness, now a wharfie in Cairns, was a leader of the north Queensland Indigenous rights movement (in 1961, McGinness became the president of FCAATSI).

Non-Indigenous communists were also leading members in many state organisations, notably Barry Christophers and Shirley Andrews in Victoria and Len Fox in Sydney, together with left-wing Labor Party members, such as MPs Les Haylen and Gordon Bryant, as well as more conservative liberals and Christians. CPA-led or -influenced trades unions, including the Waterside Workers Federation, the Builders Labourers Federation and Building Workers Industrial Union, provided invaluable support.

The actual launch of what was to become the referendum campaign was a packed meeting in Sydney Town Hall on April 29, 1957, where the AAF launched a mass petition drive calling on the federal government to hold a referendum to delete discriminatory clauses from the constitution and to take over the states’ control of Aboriginal affairs. One of the key architects of the petition, along with Bandler, AAF president Bert Groves and famed radical Jessie Street, was Christian Jollie-Smith, a barrister and a founding member of the CPA.

The formation of FCAATSI at a conference of representatives of eight state-based Aboriginal rights and welfare organisations in Adelaide in January 1958 boosted the struggle nationally. FCAATSI adopted the AAF’s petition. Already thousands of signatures had been collected. In October 1962, another big meeting, this time organised by FCAATSI, “relaunched” the petition. Ninety-four separate petitions — 103,000 signatures — had already been presented in federal parliament. Shirley Andrews was the national coordinator of the petition drive. Campaign committees were set up in each federal electorate.

By 1965, the campaign had the support of the ACTU and the Australian Council of Churches. The presentation of petitions by local MPs was now daily (even PM Robert Menzies had to table one from his constituents). The pressure was such that Menzies agreed to meet a delegation of Indigenous FCAATSI leaders.

Nevertheless, Menzies and then Harold Holt continued to resist holding a referendum, in particular on amending the key section 51 to allow the federal government to make special laws for Indigenous people, and to override state laws.

Between 1965 and 1967, even as the mass petition drive gathered pace, the Indigenous rights movement continued to mobilise. Two now historic struggles undoubtedly helped tip mass support in favour of Indigenous rights to such a degree that the government could no longer ignore the referendum demand.

The first were the “Freedom Rides” through rural NSW beginning in February 1965, organised by Sydney University’s Student Action For Aborigines (SAFA). About a quarter of the white members of SAFA who joined SAFA president Charles Perkins on the historic trip were young CPA members. The action exposed the continued segregation and the appalling living conditions under which Indigenous people lived, in shanty towns and on reserves and missions, in country towns in the “deep north” of NSW. The trip was filmed by a TV camera crew and the graphic scenes of apartheid-like segregation and racist violence stunned the country.

The second was the NT Aboriginal workers’ historic “walk-offs” in June 1966, led by the Gurindji people. The workers accepted the assistance of the NT Council for Aboriginal Rights (NTCAR), in which Communists George Gibbs and Brian Manning were leading members. Gibbs was secretary of the NAWU’s militant wharfies’ section, whose executive had a CPA majority. Manning was also a wharfie. Renowned author and CPA member Frank Hardy chronicled the event in his book The Unlucky Australians.

On March 1, 1967, PM Holt finally relented and introduced a bill to change the constitution by referendum to repeal section 127 (which excluded Aborigines from being counted in the census) and to amend section 51. On May 27, the referendum passed with a massive overall 90.77% majority, and a majority in all states. FCAATSI’s Gordon Bryant concluded the day after: “The vote is an overwhelming endorsement of the view that it is time for material action. The government cannot hide behind constitutional inhibitions, nor can it hide behind a faith in public apathy. This vote represents a great national demand for action.”

That historic indication of the Australian people’s support for equality did not come from nowhere. It was the culmination of decades of hard-fought mass struggles by Indigenous people, their organisations and their allies — with communists, black and white, playing a leading role at every stage — which swung public opinion and laid the groundwork for the emergence of a new phase of independent Indigenous political activity in the 1970s, and to this day.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Australian Marxist-Leninist to Visit NZ

Coal Wynter is a Brisbane based bio-chemist and a long time member of Australia's largest Marxist-Leninist organisation, the Democratic Socialist Perspective.

She recently spent a year in Venezuela reporting on Hugo Chavez's unfolding socialist revolution for Australian paper, Green Left Weekly. She helped organise Australia/NZ solidarity brigades to Venezuela, including in a tour at the time of the successful re-election of Marxist president, Hugo Chavez in December 2006.

Wynter will spend late May and early June in NZ, hosted by the DSP's best friends in this country, Socialist Worker.

On Wednesday May 30th at UNITE House, Auckland, Wynter will participate in a Unity Marxist Forum on "Socialism, the Labour Party and the Left" with blogger and "decembrist" activist Oliver Woods, unionist and Cuba solidarity activist Jill Ovens and Socialist Worker's David Colyer.

From Friday June 1st to Sunday June 3rd, Wynter will participate in the Worker¹s Party's Marxism 2007 conference in Auckland

On Tuesday June 5th and Wednesday June 6th Wynter to speak at Socialist Worker front, Venezuela Aotearoa Solidarity Together (VAST) meetings in Hamilton and Rotorua.

Gee, Thanks Hugo

From Cuba's La Prensa Latina

Caracas, May 19 President of Venezuela Hugo Chavez said on Saturday that his country is not only struggling for its independence and sovereignty, but also for the fate of humankind.

He spoke at the opening of International Meetings convened here by multi-state Telesur channel under the theme "The right of every citizen to inform and be informed."

Chavez stressed that what is happening here is not only for the sake of Venezuela, but for sovereignty and independence around the world. "It is in fact a battle in which all humankind is at stake," he said.

He explained that the simple sovereign action of failing to renew the concession for private Radio Caracas Television channel (RCTV) has triggered a world battle around the Bolivarian Revolution.

New Zeal

Perhaps some of our local Chavistas could explain why their hero has just failed to renew the licence of the main opposition TV channel (RCTV)

Anybody brave enough to support Presiident Chavez's action?

Saturday, May 19, 2007

More on Chin'a Communist Training Schools

From the website of the Communist Party of China

The three cadre training institutes of the Communist Party of China (CPC) has played an important role in training cadres, said a senior CPC official.

Zeng Qinghong, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, said that the party needs cadre training bases like the three institutes, which are in Shanghai, Jiangxi and Shaanxi, to spread the glorious traditions and styles of the party and ensure that the Party and the nation "never change color" and are always full of vitality.

Zeng, who is also Chinese Vice-President, made the remarks at a recent teaching work conference of the three institutes, located in Pudong District of Shanghai, Jinggangshan of Jiangxi and Yan'an of Shaanxi.

From May 10 to 14, Zeng visited the three institutes and attended the teaching work conference held in Yan'an city, which was presided over by He Guoqiang, head of the Organization Department of the CPC Central Committee.

Establishing the three institutes is an important decision made by the CPC Central Committee with Hu Jintao as the General Secretary after the 16th CPC National Congress in 2002 and an important event in the CPC's cadre education and training history, Zeng said.

Since their establishments, the three institutes have trained more than 20,000 leading cadres from various fields and proved their unique roles in training the Party's middle-level and high-level officials, he said.

Zeng said after the 17th CPC National Congress, to be held in the second half of this year, a new massive training program for cadres will be launched.

Friday, May 18, 2007

China Trains Thousands of Communist Cadres

China has abandoned communism-everybody knows that.

Why then has she established three major institutes to train a new generation of communist cadres?

It just doesn't add up.

From the Communist Party of China website

A major new round of training for cadres will be launched after the 17th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) to improve the quality of party cadres, said a senior CPC official.

Zeng Qinghong, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, made the remarks during a visit to the Jinggangshan Cadres' Institute located at a former revolutionary base in east China's Jiangxi Province.

The Party's 17th National Congress will be held in Beijing in the second half of 2007.

It is the third time, Zeng, also vice president of China, has visited the Jinggangshan Cadres' Institute.

China built three high-profile cadre training institutes in Shanghai's Pudong, Jiangxi's Jinggangshan and Shaanxi's Yan'an after the Party's 16th National Congress to improve the quality and skills of leading cadres and conduct international training exchanges.

Pudong is the most developed area in China. The Pudong-based institute runs courses on international affairs, and helps trainees keep pace with the times and be more open. The other two institutes gives officials the opportunity to learn more about revolutionary traditions and conditions in the country.

So far, nearly 8,000 top and middle level CPC cadres have been trained at the Jinggangshan Cadres' Institute.

Zeng urged the institute to ensure that training courses draw from real life but also from revolutionary traditions.

Nirupa George-Tamil Advocate

Several revolutionary movements, from Venezuela, Ireland, Palestine, Fiji, Tonga the Philippines and Sri Lanka have active New Zealand support networks.

All work closely with the local extreme left and tend to be mutually supportive of one another.

A young Sri Lankan born New Zealander, Nirupa George is proving an able dedicated advocate of the Tamil cause.

Nirupa George was born in the Tamil stronghold of Sri lanka's northernmost city, Jaffna and was educated in Auckland. George came to prominence in 2004 when she "entered parliament" as the Youth MP for Marxist Green MP, Keith Locke.

George has maintained an interest in the youth MP system and this year is a member of the Youth Reference Group for Youth Parliament 2007. She lists her concerns as

"Climate change and global warming, poverty, Sri Lankan civil war"

In 2004 George was commended by the Human Rights Commission for contributing to the "Voice of Tamil Youth". "Seven young Tamil New Zealanders, ranging from senior secondary school to university students, spoke about their experiences of settling into New Zealand at a forum in Auckland in March, as part of Race Relations Week."

By 2006, George was a student at Auckland University and involved in the radical "Voice of the Youth for Justice and Peace".

In December 2006 George, representing the Consortium of Tamil Associations in New Zealand spoke at a forum organised by Global Peace and Justice Auckland on the history and current situation of the Tamil community in Sri Lanka.

GPJA is of course run by two well known Marxist radicals, John Minto and Mike Treen.

Earlier this year, George was one of 15 candidates nominated for the inaugural Youth for Human Rights Awards...

"..Tamils in Sri Lanka are suffering on a daily basis- that is a well-known fact. Life is very hard for those that live there. Firstly, they are living in a nation that has been wrecked by civil war for over two decades. Tamils are a race of people that have been suffering for over 50 years at the hands of a majority Sinhalese government. They live in constant fear of the Sri Lankan security forces. So many of our people have been murdered, assassinated, disappeared, tortured, raped, beaten and had the will to live taken away form them..."

For several weeks, revolutionary Tamil students at Jaffna University and local high schools have boycotted lectures and classes. The boycott was allegedly sparked when armed men invaded the campus destroying memorial photographs of students killed in the fighting and stealing funds raised by students, allegedly to support refugees.

Nirupa George has been actively supporting the boycotting Sri Lankan students in her work at Auckland University.

She has just succeeded in getting the Student Representative Council (SRC) of the Auckland University Students Association (AUSA) to vote in support of the boycott.

Two motions were put forward to the SRC by Nirupa George the Media Liaison Officer for Tamil Youth Organization New Zealand (TYONZ). Before the motion was put forward she spoke about the boycott, explaining the issues facing the students in Jaffna and how although New Zealand was halfway across the world, it is important to recognize human rights for the Tamil students involved and for fellow tertiary students to support each other.

The motion put forward by the chair "That AUSA supports the actions and intentions of the students and staff involved in the Jaffna University and schools boycott and that AUSA believe the students have a right to express their opinions and views without the threat of violence or death" was carried.

Good stuff. Who could oppose a resolution like that? Sri Lanka's Tamil revolutionaries will no doubt be pleased.

Rodney's Alternative Budget

Here’s ACT leader Rodney Hide's alternative Budget

* Drop income tax to 20%;

* Hold government spending in real terms;

* Deal to red tape through a Regulatory Responsibility Bill;

* Demand transparency and accountability for all government departments through Service Level Agreements that would see Department Heads fired for failure to deliver.

* Distributing shares in the SOEs to everyone;

* Dismantle Cullen fund with a dividend into everyone’s Kiwi Saver or an Education endowment

I especially like the idea of distributing shares in State Owned Enterprises back to their real owners, the citizens.

Had the economic reformers of the '80s done more of this, "privatisation" would not have the stigma it has today.

Service Level Agreements are a potential problem.

Currently the police top brass are tied to similar agreements. Their bonuses depend on low crime stats. So what do they do? They fudge statistics, ignore heavy and hard to catch criminals and focus on easy meat to make crime stats look good etc.

This approach has proved disastrous to policing and should be abolished forthwith.

Service Level Agreements would have to take the "corruption" factor into account and be very intelligently focused to be effective.

Farrar on Labour's Tax Extremism

David Farrar at Kiwiblog has written an excellent post budget post on Labour's extreme and greedy approach to taxes.

Check it out.

Why This is an Extremist Government

In eight years Dr Cullen has taken a Taliban approach to fiscal strategy. No one expects Labour to not spend more than National. No one expects Labour to give as big a tax cut as National would. That is why we have choice between parties. But to have $24.5 billion of extra tax revenue, and to refuse to give even 1% of it back let alone 10% or 20%. That is extreme.

It is the ideological equivalent of an ACT Government, not a National Government. An Act Government would probably have given back the entire $24.5 billion, and not increase spending by a single dollar. (Libertarianz members stop drooling). Labour doesn't cut income taxes by a single dollar and spends it all. This is not mainstream economic management.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

ACT Stands Staunch For Liberty

The NZ Herald's Audrey Young on why some MPs still opposed the the anti-smacking bill despite a last minute amendment.

Hat Tip Lindsay Mitchell

Voting against the bill will be the two Act MPs, leader Rodney Hide and Heather Roy; two of United future's MPs, Gordon Copeland and Judy Turner, and the independent MP Taito Phillip Field.

The Act MPs come from a libertarian tradition and believe that the bill not only criminalises parents who smack but that it is an example of state interference in people's lives.

In the end, only 9 of 120 MPs voted against the Bill.

I'm proud that ACT's Rodney Hide and Heather Roy opposed the bill every step of the way.

I'm even more proud that they were consistent in their reasoning. ACT's MPs opposed the bill simply because it is a gross intrusion by the state into family life.

That all of National's MPs voted for this bill, should cause grave concern to all who value individual liberty and personal responsibility.

Lindsay Mitchell on Consequences of National's Anti-Smacking Sellout

Former ACT candidate, Lindsay Mitchell comments on the results of National's sellout over the Bradford/Clark anti Smacking Bill.

National seems to have no idea of the consequences of what they have done. Lindsay has more foresight.

Thanks to National's compromise (that's right, the party that purports to believe in 'personal freedom') today power will be transferred from judges and juries (the people) to the police and CYF (the state). This isn't the trifling matter some think. God knows we need to do something about a small group of people who are not fit to be parents but that doesn't mean we have to submit to the state a massive degree of control over good and functioning families. There is absolutely no need to go this far.

And another thing John Key. You have opened the door to much, much more. Having succeeded with this folly the likes of the Children's Commissioner, Barnardos, Bradford et al will move to pushing for compulsory school checks. Then they won't need to wait for a report on a child - they can make their own. They will run the same stunts they used this time. Distorting figures, whipping up hysteria over what is, again, a problem being generated by a very small percentage of families.

You say you have saved the people from being "hung out to dry". No you haven't. You have just rolled over in the first of many battles the state will wage against innocent families. The War on Poverty, the War on Drugs - now the War on Child Abuse. More harm than good will come of it. Considerably more.

Shenin's Plans for A Revived Soviet Union

Watch this man! He may have his finger on the Russian nuclear button one day.

From Once Upon A Time in the West

On the 90th anniversary of the "Great Socialist October Revolution," Oleg Shenin--Stalinist, leader of the restored/continuing Communist Party of the Soviet Union, and August 1991 coup mastermind--delivered the following thesis to the 16th conference of the International Communist Seminar (ICS). This was hosted by the Workers' Party of Belgium in Brussels between May 4 and 6, 2007.

After a long discourse on the history of the Soviet Union and the "betrayal" of socialism under Gorbachev Shenin describes his plan for ousting the "Washington-backed" Putinist regime .

Shenin describes his 2008 presidential bid as the last "peaceful" opportunity to restore socialism in Russia. Significantly does not rule out "non-peaceful" means in the restoration of Soviet power:

At the end of the XX century Russia became part of the world imperialist system in the most humiliating role - as a semi-colonial supplier of raw materials, that could be be split and could lose its statehood in future.

The only possible way out of this is the renaissance of the collectivist, socialist way of life, the power of the Soviets, the voluntary reunification of the people into the united USSR.

The main condition of the salvation of our Motherland is the forming of a strong mass force, a mass national liberation movement headed by the united Communist party of the Soviet Union.

The party recognises that these goals can only be achieved as a result of a new stage of the socialist revolution, whose inevitability, either in peaceful form or by non-peaceful means, is predestined by the whole development of the modern society, despite all the ups and downs.

Of course, it is desirable and very possible that the workers would come to power in a peaceful way. On the 1st of May last year in my radio interview I (Oleg Shenin) publicly declared my decision to run for Russian presidency in the elections of 2008.

I think this is the last and only possibility to mobilise workers for what really would be a peaceful revolution, in order to bring their representative to power. We are calling this an informational-electoral-forceful version of actions. Forceful in the sense that we'll need to organise mass protest actions at a necessary time and at the right moment.

The work of CPSU and its growing number of allies is aimed at this goal. We would be grateful for support and help in any form.

The era, that has begun with the October revolution, objectively became an era of transition from capitalism towards socialism world wide - and, despite all the ups and downs of the process, it is impossible to change this nature. This is the main conclusion of this document that is being confirmed on a daily basis by the development of events in the world.

Would Don Have "Whipped" His Puppies?

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Russia To help Myanmar Go Nuclear

Not content to build a nuclear power plant for Iran, Russia is to help the South Asian socialist tyranny of Myanmar into the nuclear age.

From Vietnam News Agency

Hat Tip Once Upon A Time

Moscow (VNA) – Russia and Myanmar on May 15 signed an inter-governmental agreement under which the former will help the latter build a nuclear research centre.

Russia has agreed to help design and build the centre in Myanmar.

The centre, which will be overseen by the International Atomic Energy Agency, will have a 10-megawatt light-water research reactor, as well as facilities for processing and storing radioactive waste.

Copeland To Quit United Future?

A positive side effect of the Bradford/Clark anti-smacking bill?

Could United Future leader, Peter Dunne soon be the Jim Anderton of Ohariu?

According to Tracy Watkin in today's Dominion Post;

The government has been dealt a blow on the eve of the budget, with United Future MP Gordon Copeland expected to announce today he is resigning from his party in protest at the so-called anti-smacking bill.

NZPA understands that Mr Copeland is leaving over Green MP Sue Bradford member's bill to remove from the Crimes Act the statutory defence of "reasonable force" to correct a child.

Mr Copeland, a Christian, has always opposed the legislation and while he voted for an amendment stating police had discretion not to prosecute inconsequential complaints he felt the bill still made criminals of parents who smacked their children.

He would form the party with former colleague Larry Baldock who has been running a petition against the Bradford bill.

The party would be called Future New Zealand - the name of the Christian party which the United Party previously merged with.

Mr Copeland is expected to explain his decision later today, but it is believed he will remain in Parliament, creating fresh uncertainty for the government, whose certain majority on legislation has already been removed by the resignation of Mangere MP Taito Phillip Field.

Russia Builds Military Alliance Against NATO

From Novosti

MOSCOW, May 14- The Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) is planning to create a large military contingent comprising units and formations of several Central Asian states, the head of the post-Soviet security group said Monday.

CSTO members - Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan - use the organization as a platform to fight drug trafficking, terrorism, and organized crime, and have pledged to provide immediate military assistance to one another in the event of an attack.

The bloc has a Collective Rapid Reaction Force deployed in Central Asia, and is continuing to build up its military forces.

"We are planning to create a larger [military] contingent on the basis of a Collective Rapid Reaction Force in Central Asia that would comprise units and formations from four or five Central Asian states," CSTO Secretary General Nikolai Bordyuzha told a news conference at RIA Novosti.

He also said the next meeting of the CSTO's Collective Security Council has been scheduled for July 17 in Moscow to discuss the organization's peacekeeping mechanisms.

The enlargement of the CSTO military contingent could be viewed as a step to counter-balance NATO's further eastward expansion and to keep Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) countries under Russia's military protection.

Russia earlier said a united regional air defense system could encompass almost all the territory of the former Soviet Union within the CSTO framework in the future.