INDEPENDENT NEWS

S11 Veterans March In Solidarity With Prague

Published: Tue 26 Sep 2000 10:53 AM
Battle Of Melbourne Veterans March In Solidarity With Prague
On September the 11th, New Zealand socialists bore witness to the worst police violence seen in Melbourne since the Anti Vietnam War rallies 30 years ago, at the mass blockade to shut down the World Economic Forum.... http://www.s11.org http://melbourne.indymedia.org
Later on today on the streets of the Czech Republic sees Europe's Battle of Seattle, as tens of thousands of environmentalists, trade unionists, anti capitalists and revolutionary socialists take to the streets of Prague in an attempt to close down the World Bank / IMF annual meeting. All around the world, demonstrations, occupations and direct actions are taking place in solidarity with the protestors in Prague and their demands to cancel all Third World debts.
The growing power of transnational corporations, Western banks and unfettered free market globalisation is being met by a growing internationalist anti capitalist street movement. From Seattle to Melbourne, from London to Prague, hundreds of thousands of activists are prepared to challenge tear gas, batons and horses to close down the undemocratic, unelected forces of corporate and financial power, such as the WTO, the WEF, the World Bank and the IMF.
In Auckland today, Battle of Melbourne veterans will speak before the demonstration leaves the Quad at the University of Auckland, heading for the major banks, corporations and Trade NZ. They can be contacted at 025 6048955. They are-
Joe Carolan Matthew Pratt Garreth Gillatt
(WHY TRADE NZ?) http://www.converge.org.nz/watchdog/93/9whack.htm the Government's TradeNZ website has promoted NZ to the rest of the world as a place to set up business since it offers "low cost labour" with sufficient unemployment to make us "particularly competitive" (NZEI Rourou, NZ Educational Institute, vol.10, no.8, 13 Aug., 1999, p.8). As well, according to the Government, "under the Employment Contracts Act there is complete flexibility of hours worked".
http://www.union.org.nz/textonly/23julyb.html SHAME ON YOU, TRADENZ! Tradenz's promotion of NZ call centres as a cheap labour industry (see "Union News", 16 July) provoked an angry reaction from Graham Cooke, Secretary of the Meat Workers Union of Aotearoa. "Your call centre web page makes me ashamed to be a New Zealander," he said in an open letter to the chief executive of Tradenz. "I represent 8000 North Island meat workers who feel quite 'gutted' after years of pain due to the Employment Contracts Act only to see their employers selling their hard earned sacrifices cheaply to the American house wife," Graham Cooke wrote. "Overseas industry that heads for New Zealand must be made aware that they are not going to exploit New Zealanders then take their capital after crippling our environment and its people."
http://www.converge.org.nz/pma/sept99.htm
Arms exports (aka defence technology exports) - were not so much of an issue in the past, but are now more worrying. Tradenz is pushing 'defence technologies' as a valuable export earner, there has been a 30% increase in such sales over the past three years to a total of $96 million last year. In 1998 Tradenz spent $25,000 upping the profile of NZ defence companies, and the inaugural Defence Industry Committee Awards of Excellence were held in Wellington to recognise 'leaders in NZ's defence industry'.
http://www.greens.org.nz/docs/press/000413gm-Tradenz.htm Tax-payer funds spent on pro-GE propaganda 12 April 2000 Rod Donald, Green Party Co-Leader Green Co-leader Rod Donald said today he is outraged a Government board is spending tax-payer money to promote genetic engineering. The latest National Business Review carries a $2500 page-dominant advertisement; styled as a column by Trade New Zealand chief executive Fran Wilde and bearing the Trade New Zealand logo. The column attacks opponents of genetic engineering and hails the technology as a "lifesaver" for developing countries. Mr Donald said it was "totally inappropriate" for the chief executive of Trade New Zealand to be taking an overt political stand, especially when a Government announcement setting up a Royal Comission on genetic engineering was imminent. "Wilde's advertorial descends into slogans in its unwarranted attacks on people who are genuinely concerned about the ramifications of genetic engineering, as 'affluent liberals'," he said. Her statement "half truths have been the hallmark of much of the criticism of gene technology. But then, if you don't have to worry about where your next meal is coming from, self-indulgence can take many forms", is an insult to the scientists and citizens who want the Royal Commission to consider the issue before irrevocably committing this country to a future of genetic engineering. "The presentation of the advertisement as an article is as deceptive as its content is opinionated," said Mr Donald. The advertisement is laid out like an editorial column, and is not openly identified as an advertisement. Mr Donald said Wilde's justification of genetic engineering did not stack up. "She attempts to tug the heartstrings by talking about starving millions, but gene technology has more to do with profits than feeding the hungry," he said. "I suggest she listens to National Radio's current Insight documentary series which features Indian experts speaking out against genetic engineering." Mr Donald will ask the minister responsible for Trade New Zealand, Phil Goff, whether this provocative campaign has his blessing, and whether he thinks it is an appropriate use of tax-payer funds. Mr Donald said. Trade New Zealand advertisement appeared on p4 of last Friday's edition of the National Business Review - copy available on request Rod Donald MP; Gina Dempster, Press secretary: 04 470 6723 or 021 1265 289
CONTACT JOE CAROLAN AT 025 6048955 for live broadcast from Trade NZ occupation In solidarity with PRAGUE DEMONSTRATIONS http://roads.to/swo

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