Other formats

    Adobe Portable Document Format file (facsimile images)   TEI XML file   ePub eBook file  


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

Salient: Victoria University Students' Paper. Vol. 29, No. 12. 1966.


page 11


The Petty Establishment has finally arrived at Victoria. After superficial investigation I have at last identified the local organisation. I spoke to a Spokesman.

"What the hell is the Petty Establishment?"

After recovering from the shock of my uncouth language, he replied—"It exists to combat the evils of student life—student activity and public knowledge." He outlined to me the organisations four-point plan:

1. PE believes there is too much inter-student communication at the social level. "After all," he said, "we are here to get units, are we not?"

2. PE is prepared to help the press, public, and the press ("our motto is 'ppp,") to put down Procesh, Extrav. Cappicade, stunts, pub crawls and other (yechh) traditional aspects of student life.

3. PE sees no reason to promote the activities of cultural clubs.

4. PE believes that a strong student association can only exist when the majority of students participate. To help prevent this, PE will try to keep candidates unknown (and if possible unopposed) and discourage students from wasting time at general meetings or wasting units in subcommittee service.

5. PE believes that positive steps should be taken to keep well out of the public notice facets of student activity not normally recognised.

"Our PE is already an integral part of the university," the Spokesman said. Amongst its more significant episodes have been the Great Caf Protest, whereby several members looked remorsefully at the server; the crossing protest, when members left the crossing at an angle, at least six feet from the kerb; and the Vietnam protest, when a newspaper photograph of an international financier (being reported as 'entering a gnomery to get away from it all') was turn in twain.

PE members can be recognised by their habit of eating in the caf in cords and jeans, usually not both at once.


Chants of "comrade!", boos and jeers threatened to break up a public meeting on "Vietnam —Key to Victory and probably Disaster" held t'other night in the Caltax Lounge. The meeting was sponsored by the New Zealand Pseudocratic Society, of which a few present were not committee members. The society was set up to combat certain right-wing elements who distorted the true picture of United States aggression in South-East Asia, and to withhold support for New Zealand troops serving Asian war widows.

The guest speaker, Mr. Loshaft, gave a detailed description of the world-wide build-up of Reactionism since the end of the Second World War. He emphasised that any economical (sic) or material aid given by New Zealand to the underdeveloped countries of Asia was a dangerous policy, because it assumes that the legislators were achieving tolerance and goodwill, which could delay the Revolution.

Speaking on subversive tactice, Mr. Loshaft said that the US Government did not believe in Civil Rights, and quoted several Senators and Governors on the subject. As for cultural exchanges, he said, "we all know about them —has not Kennedy once said that cultural exchanges are the best way of presenting the American Way of Life?" The ballet is merely another method of presenting subtle propaganda, he said.

Mr. Loshaft said that he was very suspicious of the efforts by the American Civil Rightists to establish liaison with similar groups in, say, Africa. We all know the Civil Rights groups are merely agents of the United States Government, he said. Too many people had allowed themselves to be made dupes by the reactionary forces. He cited as an example the members of the clergy who supported the Government's Eastern policy. He pointed to the third of the audience—about 20 students—and commented that they appeared to have close relations with the Nazi Party, which explained the occasional critical interjection. "I've been telling people these things for at least four years," he said, "and I think I should tell these people—especially those Geography Honours students and other so-called intellectuals—a few facts."

On several occasions, as the audience coughed and shuffled, the meeting showed signs of breaking up in disorder, but the speakers were more than a match for the student agitators. However, a speech from a member of the under-thirty section of the Society proposing a vote of thanks to the speaker was disturbed by boos and, near the end, a half-dozen shouts of "comrade!" But his rousing, if weak, voice and passionate gestures as he reiterated the speaker's views were well received by the 40 or so making up the majority of the audience.

In reply to a question from the floor, Mr. Loshaft stated that he was concerned that New Zealand had no written constitution, and that he believed that this country, like Russia, should have one. To a further question, asking how close was his organisation to the Communist Party, Mr. Loshaft shouted that it was a lie.

The meeting closed with a rending of the three verses of The Queen.