As the month of July entered its first week, New Zealanders were particularly honoured by a personal address from no less a person than the Vice President of the USA, Joe Biden.
The occasion chosen by the Vice-President, was the American celebration of their rebellion against what is still to many New Zealanders, their beloved Royal Family. One might sympathise with the colonists’ decision to throw off the shackles of their obedience to a distant English throne. Such sympathy would likewise be due to all those other peoples the liberated colonists, have subsequently subjected to their imperial will. As one looks at the words and ambition of the founding Fathers of America and compares them with the global dominance seeking, plutocratic empire that is their legacy, one is overcome with melancholy and a sense of good intentions betrayed. My much loved grandfather, Barton Mott was born in America. My great-grandfather, Frederick Blount Mott, according to family lore, had once been invited to go into business with Jesse James, but had opted instead to go east and become a Unitarian minister with his church on Boston’s Barton Square. The fact that I grew up loving America and all things American, intensifies the pain I feel at the pain it is inflicting on itself and on other nations around the world.
The V-P’s impressive recital Click: Joe Biden of what New Zealanders have in common with the United States of America, is quite unprecedented in its sudden demonstration of camaraderie between our two (one powerful: one decidedly less so) peoples. I picked it up as it was broadcast immediately preceding the breakfast news on National Radio. Among my muesli’s pumpkin seeds and chunks of dried apricot, I found myself spitting out globs of bullshit.
What could have prompted this sudden outpouring of love for little ole’ New Zealand? It isn’t hard to work that one out – it is the fast approaching addition of our craven government’s signature to the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement. This treaty would appear to be designed to trap our economy forever in the snare of the America-centric, multi-national corporations in which much of the Vice-President’s wealth and that of the American elite (and probably that of the elites of the other signatory nations) is almost certainly invested.
Of at least equal importance in American eyes, is the TPPA’s exclusion of New Zealand’s main trading partner, China, and, hopefully, a resultant limitation on its ability to grow its economy to a point from which it could compete with American ambition. One has to suspect that Joe’s position as Vice President reflects his status as being not quite the sharpest tool in Washington’s woodshed. Why on Earth draw attention to this one-sided negotiation, when all parties involved are trying their uttermost to keep the deal secret and as far away from their electorates as possible?
I recently came upon an article by someone, who is clearly influenced by Marxist theory. Though clearly, judging by the state of the world, no economist or political philosopher seems ever to have got it all right, one has to accept that some of Marx’s analytical insights remain helpful. One such contribution to understanding could be the identification of the role of the comprador. Click: Comprador
To me, this was a concept with which I was already familiar, but not under that title. Several years ago, I read John Perkin’s “Confessions of an Economic hit-man” Click: Hit Man and decided, after some reflection (at that time, I was still sufficiently naïve to find some of its assertions incredible) that, though it might have contained inaccuracies, the gist was true and the work was not a figment of the author’s fantasy.
Since then I have started to recognise the compradors within the governing circles of lesser nations as they conduct trade negotiations and partake in other forms of collaboration, with more powerful nations in fields such as defence and intelligence. It can be such a thrill to be rubbing shoulders with the rich and mighty! If personal profit can be added to thrill, it becomes relatively easy to find excuses for selling your nation down the tubes – in its own best interests of course!
This is the reality of the mechanism by which the TPPA is being tailored to suit New Zealand’s best interests: Click: Bribe Politicians If you want to add additional flavour to your muesli, then think how much Joe Biden might have trousered for his Independence Day greetings to New Zealand.
The TPPA is a work in progress. As its clauses are being negotiated in secret, it is hard to forecast what fertiliser is to be dumped on the New Zealand mushroom bed once the agreement is signed.
What corporatism can do for a nation: Click: Consequence of Corporatism
In the meantime, other major global events are developing so rapidly that one can do little more than just snatch at fleeting commentaries. Here are a few such comments from the multiple global crisis points:
BRICS/SCO summit as Greece bites the dust: Click: BRICS/SCO To be treated with due caution. The writer, Pepe Escobar is a great enthusiast for the Eurasian cause and is quite capable of exaggeration – but in the western media very little attention is paid to the momentous events that are Escobar’s chosen subject.
Ukraine MH17 – https://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article42389.htm It is worth paying attention to this subject. As forecast in my earlier blogs on the subject, a cover-up is in process. The stakes are far too high for the Western alliance to allow an honest outcome -the whole of the EU’s hostility to Russia is predicated on this being a Russian inspired, rather than a US or Ukrainian inspired crime. If you are technically minded, the hyperlink at the bottom of the article, about the type of missile used, is also of interest.
The Iranian Agreement: Click: Iran trade op An opportunity missed! Why didn’t NZ’s Prime Minister visit Iran instead of Saudi Arabia?
Grexit: Click: Grexit Interview with the Yanis Varoufakis – the recently resigned Greek Finance Minister. The eulogy for the EU.
And a final slightly more optimistic note (warming can still be limited to 2C) on Climate change: https://www.earthisland.org/journal/index.php/elist/eListRead/climate_change_will_never_stop_leading_climatologist_says/