TPPA Protestors Not ‘Rent A Crowd’

The National government would have everyone believe that TPPA protesters are ill-informed, unemployed rabblerousers without anything better to do than make public spectacles of themselves. ‘Rent a crowd’, John Key calls them.

Nothing could be further from the truth. TPPA protesters are very likely the people serving you in shops and restaurants, cleaning your office, teaching your children, caring for you if you end up in hospital or residential care, giving you legal advice. TPPA protesters are a very large and diverse group from all walks of life. Continue reading

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Charade

The Trans-Pacific is a corporate raid. It’s about stealing our sovereignty and killing democracy. Investor-state dispute settlement provisions mean that when big corporates tell us to jump, the only thing we will be able to do is ask “how high?”

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative have confirmed that negotiators from the 12 participating countries will meet in Hawaii from March 9 to 15 to try to wrap up the Trans-Pacific free trade agreement. We can’t let that happen.

Time to dust off the banners and take to the streets again on March 7th to try to get the message across to New Zealanders and the New Zealand government that this agreement is a crock and we should have no part of it. There will be marches in 22 towns and cities across New Zealand. Similar actions are happening in the other 11 participating countries. Continue reading

Looks like we just free traded away our freedom of speech

The Alliance Party has denounced the physical attack today on Green MP Russell Norman on the steps of Parliament.

Alliance Party spokesperson Victor Billot says that the incident involved Chinese security officials who had clearly assaulted a representative of the New Zealand people engaged in legitimate peaceful protest.

“If a MP can no longer stand on the steps of New Zealand Parliament and register his views without being roughed up, then we might as well lower the flag and put up a sign saying OUR PRINCIPLES SOLD TO THE HIGHEST BIDDER.”

Mr Billot says that the free trade rooster had come home to roost and New Zealand was learning the hard way that “free” trade had some interesting effects on real freedoms.

More disturbing than the incident itself was the response of John Key.

No serious harm came to Dr Norman, but the symbolism of the incident was not lost on anyone, with the exception the Prime Minister.

“On being questioned by media about an MP being assaulted up by agents of a foreign power, the Prime Minister of New Zealand started to quack about how he hoped it didn’t ruin the official visit, meaning of course the free trade deals.”

The remarkable thing about the response of the Prime Minister is the deep hypocrisy of his attitude.

The National Party has always been outspoken about the rights of the individual and the evils of “communism.”

The great irony is now when a left wing MP defending freedom of speech is attacked, and the National Prime Minister is clearly more concerned about profits from free trade with “Communist” China than any old fashioned democratic values.

At the end of the day, it turned out that all the patriotic, freedom loving National Party was worried about was money.

ENDS

For more information, contact Alliance Party spokesperson Victor Billot on 021482219