The visit of the Chinese Vice President to New Zealand was another opportunity for the Key Government to cosy up to a brutal regime that is, apparently, our 'new best friend.'
And, if you believe what the Minister of Trade has been saying, our good buddy has saved New Zealand from the worst effects of the Great Recession.
In something approaching sycophancy, Tim Groser told Vice President Xi Jinping that China 'had buffered New Zealand during recent difficult financial times'.
The 260,000 New Zealanders who are presently jobless would probably disagree with Groser that we are all living in a 'Chinese Wonderland.'
Tim Groser is keen to get all 'lovey-dovey' with the Chinese Stalinists but Chinese workers are less than enamoured with Xi Jinping and his fellow bureaucrats.
While the Key Government was playing footsy with the Chinese Vice President, widespread strikes continued in China.
Just how widespread the strikes are is hard to determine because the regime is actively trying to suppress news of the strikes reaching the west. It was none other Xi Jimping who issued the instructions to the Chinese state media to stop reporting all strike activity.
Typical of the strikes are those presently occurring in the Honda car plants.
These strikes are typically about the low pay and the unacceptable working conditions.
Nearly 2000 workers are on strike at one Honda plant . They currently earn the minimum wage of 900 yuan ($142) a month and are demanding a rise to 1700 yuan a month.
Honda has offered a 100 yuan increase which workers have described as 'an insult'
Striking workers are now being threatened with dismissal.
The workers are also striking over working conditions which are nothing less than brutal.
Workers are forced to stand for eight hours, with pregnant women allowed to sit only in their last trimester. Workers are not allowed to speak to one another, and they have to obtain passes before going to toilet. Workers are constantly monitored.
It's not an exaggeration to say that working conditions are prison-like.
The Honda have now elected a council of shop stewards to negotiate with management. The workers’ organisation was formed in opposition to the state-controlled All China Federation of Trade Unions (ACFTU), and some have called for a new independent union - a union that will truly represent and defend the interests of workers.
in Shanghai, 2,000 workers at TPO Displays, partly owned by electronics giant Foxconn, went on strike on Wednesday.
Foxconn, a Taiwanese company, is one of the largest makers of electronic components for companies including Apple, Dell and Hewlett-Packard.
Ten Foxconn workers have committed suicide over the past month and workers' rights groups say that the low pay and gruelling work at the Foxconn factories have played a major role in the suicides.
The Chinese workforce endures a high level of suicides.
'Since 2005 to now, we have recorded hundreds of suicides and attempted suicides by workers who have not been paid," Geoffrey Crothall of the China Labour Bulletin recently told USA Today.
The Chinese regime - of which both Labour and National Governments are such a fan - is dithering in the face of the new wave of strikes It's instinct for self survival means it would like to violently suppress the strikes but it is worried that this might provoke a more generalised political movement against its continued rule.
The Chinese regime is a brutal monster but a monster that both National and Labour Governments are more than happy to call a friend.