This Friday night there will be a protest outside the Pacific Events Centre in Manukau, the venue for John Key's 'Crisis Summit'.

It is here that 250 selected participants will try to work out a way to steer New Zeaalnd capitalism through some very threatening waters.

It will be promoted as a conference of 'national purpose'. 'Where all in this boat, together' will be the common theme from self-serving politicians, business people and docile union 'leaders' - but we all know this conference is about seeking ways to make ordinary people bear the brunt of a crisis they didn't create.

This is a crisis that has been provoked by the mad ideology of neoliberalism - but this summit will not seek to renounce this discredited ideology. Indeed this summit will continue to defend the 'free market', leaving its assumptions and policies compltely unexamined. There will be a consensus at this summit, despite all the evidence to the contrary, that neoliberalism does actually work!

Only the socialist left is putting up any real opposition to John Key's little capitalist get-together.

The protest on Friday is being organised by Socialist Aotearoa, but it is being supported by other socialist groups and activists and by some unionists. Leading the charge is Unite - the only union, as far as I'm aware, to condemn this summit.

Unite's Matt McCarten got it right when he wrote in his NZ Herald column:

'Does anyone think that the solutions proposed by the business community (after they ask for Government cash) will offer anything except an insistence that business taxes be cut; wages not be increased; workers' legal rights repealed; and cheaper labour be imported? This summit is solely about safeguarding private profits.'

I suspect our political opponents will paint our protest as puny and futile.

What they choose to ignore is that we are joining opposition all around the world to government and business attempts to make ordinary people pay for the mess that the fat cats created in the first place.

From Italy to Latvia to Britain to Iceland to Argentina the cry is the same: 'We will not pay for your crisis.'

This is an issue that has exposed the so called 'progressive' Labour Party and its supporters as the politically bankrupt charlatans that they really are.

Where is the opposition to this summit? Where are the press releases? Where are the angry blog posts? What have Labour-leaning The Standard or Tumeke! blogs got to say? Nothing. The writers on these blogs are truly hollow men (and women).

Labour leader Phil Goff is just annoyed that he and his colleagues have not been invited. The Green Party have nothing to say either - yet one of its MP's was active in the unemployment rights movement for many years . What a disgrace.

Labour's political allies, the CTU top brass, will be attending though. Instead of joining the protest against this summit, the likes of EPMU National Secretary Andrew Little will be cooking up unpleasant proposals with the likes of Air New Zealand CEO Rob Fyfe.

But as Socialist Aotearoa blog edior Joe Carolan has commented :

'We're warning the union bosses to sell out and compromise at their peril. We're raising a red flag of anger outside this talkfest to show that we're sick of low pay, job losses and a morally discredited economic system that puts profits before people. We won't pay for their crisis!'

Well said.


  1. Thanks, Steven- appreciate the support.

    Your blog is fantastic, by the way, and I've been a secret admirer for ages :). Time to get connected- give me atxt at 021 1861450 or email at


    Socialist Aotearoa


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