Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Vol 35 no. 24. 28th September 1972
As a very simple first year student I would like to know why the bastion of middle class blindness is permitted to surround us "enlightened" souls. I am referring to those eye-polluters Venetian blinds. For some time I have contemplated them about the place and I feel sure that they are there for some good reason otherwise the local activists would have removed them. Is it perhaps some foul communist-plot to keep the city out. Or is it just that we can't see the blinds for the verbage.
New Zealand's Democratic Fascism
We appreciate Gary Griffiths' comment on the subtlety and hoax of "parliamentary democracy". We also agree entirely with him one should not be illusion of taking "parliamentary road" for future. Anyway, Gary seems to misunderstand the contents of the articles and letters appeared in Salient recently. We do not see there is any' sign of advocating for bourgeois democratic "freedoms".
We know very little about New Zealand politics. What is the "Kiwi-type democracy" as seen by us? It is the "democracy" for a minority of the ruling monopoly capitalists and dictatorship over the vast majority of the working people. This "bourgeois democracy" is based on the maintaining of counter revolutionary violence (i.e. armed forces, police, prison, court etc), the control of capitalist economic structure, the control of mass media, of bureaucratic administration, education, trade unions etc. In times of relative stability, the class rule of the monopoly capitalists assumes the facade of "democracy". Naked fascism is imposed when crisis arises. "Kiwi-type democracy" and ruthless dictatorship are two sides of the same coin. The history of New Zealand bourgeois democracy can be seen from the aggressive activities by New Zealand's role as a junior partner of imperialism abroad (for instance, the sending of army to South Vietnam and Malaya to suppress the national liberation movement), events such as the suppression of Seamen's strike, the sending of the army and police dogs to suppress the demonstrators at Mt. John, the government condemnation of the demonstration against imperialist PBEC meeting, the recent government cries for "law and order", the amendments to the industrial relations laws etc. The growing fascism is manifested by the forthcoming new legislations on industrial law against anti-Springbok tour; the training of large scale armed forces and police dogs against possible disruption during the visit of Springbok team; against the political demonstrations; the imposition of "law and order". All these have the support and approval of the so-called opposition party -- the social fascist Labour Party of Kirk. The emphasis of losing bourgeois dictatorship disguised as "parliamentary democracy". It is common sense that the ruling class will adjust the legislations to suit their purposes. The hypocritic debates at the parliament merely aim at keeping the fascist "Kiwi-type democracy."
It is apparent that all those parliamentarian roaders are nuts. After staying here for some years, we find out New Zealand is one of the most politically backward countries. New Zealand so-called parliamentary politicians are bloody ill-informed of the world and we doubt very much their ability of understanding the world politics even at ABC level. The so-called two party system at the parliament is merely a subtle and sophisticated form of bourgeois dictatorship. Both Muldoon and Kirk are no different to us. Essentially, New Zealand has no real freedom of speech, thought, protest, meeting, organisation if we remind ourselves of the existence of security serviced led by Gilbert. The NZBC and TV have become important machinery of the bourgeois propaganda. New Zealand newspapers are among the worst in the world. Poor coverage of the news, both domestic and international, is understandable while most important news is distorted.
The parliamentary system is a subtle system of confusing and dividing the people so as to prevent them from organising to overthrow the rule of bourgeoisie. The parliament has been used as a rubber stamp for more fascist legislations and to tie hand and foot the common people.
We are absolutely not "coloured by envy" In fact, we have a good opportunity to experience and understand the more sophisticated and subtle form of fascist "parliamentary democracy" in New Zealand. We can understand the feeling of political frustration after realising the hoax of "parliamentary democracy" in New Zealand. We can understand the feeling of political frustration after realising the hoax of "parliamentary democracy" because we ourselves have suffered for nearly 20 years. There are some Malayan students who have been deceived by the illusion i of "parliamentary democracy". These people are undoubtedly expecting to join with the reactionary ruling class J in suppressing the people.
We do not agree with Gary on his conclusion of "utter futility of the anti-Vietnam War and anti-French Test protest marches.". In contrary, such phenomena demonstrate the excellent political progress in recent years. No doubt, this sort of mass struggle is still at a very low level of political struggle within the sphere of parliamentary politics. New Zealand may take longer time to materialise the success of genuine revolutionary struggle. Revolution will not take place overnight. If Gary will recall the political situation a few years ago, he will conclude that the mass struggle in New Zealand is developing rapidly in recent years. One must look at politics in the long term, and a revolution is inevitably a protracted one.
Gary, we wish to thank you sincerely for your valuable advice and also to congratulate you on your comments on the true nature of "parliamentary democracy". We sincerely hope that you will also objectively analyse political incidents and be optimistic for the future. Revolution is the main trend of the world today! Our warmest revolutionary greetings and compliments to you and New Zealand People.
A Group of Malayan Students who Learn from New Zealand People
Keep Politics Out of Government
T. Chai alleged that the internal struggle of NZUSA was merely petty quarrels and NZUSA was incapable to handle the problem of security intelligence service on campus. I doubt how much T. Chai understands about the fight between two different lines within the NZUSA. The NZUSA dispute is essentially a political issue and some conservative students have attempted to divorce the activities of NZUSA from politics. They want to turn NZUSA into merely a student welfare service organisation and bar the students from actively participating in politics, Anti-Vietnam War movement, Anti-Springbok Tour, Anti-National Service, Women Liberation Movement, anti-Seato and anti-imperialism activities etc.
However, T. Chai did not "suggest anything feasible" either. Will he suggest the University authorities to take immediate step to investigate the 'Peace Loving Malaysians' incident? Has he contacted David Cuthbert and discussed about the capability of NZUSA to deal with spies problem on campus? Investigation, however, is still going on. It is hoped that the few 'Peace Loving Malaysians' will be expelled from the University soon after the solid information is fully accumulated.
Student Movement Onlooker.
During the last three weeks Salient has received a number of letters relating to aspects of the Malaysian dispute(s).
We have printed only some of them. Much of what Malaysian correspondents are writing would be more effective if it was addressed directly to fellow Malaysians in conversation. I appreciate the fears of 'spies on campus' but I find it difficult to believe that Malaysian security is interested in the why or the if of the MSA/ MSSA merger (though they may be interested in how its to come about). Malaysians sort it out in debate amongst yourselves. All this letter writing is getting you nowhere.
Down a Local Brown
Much has been said and done lately on the subject of Maori language in schools.
While I support the effort of any group — racial, economic, political etc — to achieve equality and fight discrimination I have personal objections to the Maori culture, which I would like to hear comments on from Maori readers.
|1.||Maori culture is very superstitious. As an atheist and humanist I cannot accept the superstitions surrounding the tangi and the multitude of spirits and supernatural beliefs. We scorn the idea of Moses opening up the Red Sea so why not reject the idea of Maui fishing us up? Any student of orogenies might tell you.......|
|2.||The Maori tribal arrangement is undemocratic. The elders, while deserving respect, have no right (in my mind) to wield the political power of the tribe. Everyone has a right to take part in political decisions — women, children etc.|
|3.||The Maori was war-like even before the European arrived. Maori hakas, clubs etc all extol the 'virtues of war' As a utopian pacifist these values are unacceptable to me.|
The Maori has certainly been cruelly treated by the European. While drunk with gifts of Pakeha grog his land was taken and his beliefs destroyed. But my beliefs haven't been drunken away — no-one has to drink alcohol. Some of the wildest, most indulgent eaters and boozers in N.Z. today are the Polynesians. When the marae, ancient Maori values are restored and we are all back in mud huts, who is going to be the first to decry the lack of D.B. cans?
Sincere love & peace
Intellectualising Old Age Pensions
Professor Philpott's answer to Mr A. McDonald's question why he failed to make submissions to the Royal Commission on Social Security - was that it was outside his area of expertise, if the Professor merely considers himself a technician, oiling the wheels of capitalism, his answer is fair enough.
But Professor Philpott should not hide his no-doubt considerable talents in this way. As a learned Professor, he may feel he would be making a fool of himself if he got up at a Royal Commission and expressed his value judgements — it seems that the conscience and the gutlessness of an academic is hidden behind the cover of his specialised area of expertise!
I can understand Professor Philpott's unwillingness to feel emotions and express his values publicly, but does he realise that while he is being reluctant to express himself the old and the sick still suffer the human indignity of the supplementary means tests, Mr McDonald referred to?
Perhaps Professor Philpott doesn't know that the principles the present social security system was based on were set out in the form of value judgements. What a great loss to thousands of New Zealanders it would have been if Dr McMillan and Arnold Nordmeyer had thought back in the early 1930's, that they should stick to their areas of expertise (medicine and religion) and not expressed their value judgements and then fought to have them implemen ted. The crapped out social security system we have at present is not the fault of those two men but their contemporaries and successors in public office.
Professor Philpott failed to reply to Mr McDonald's question as to whether The Responsible Society (Dr. W.B. Sutch's submissions) and the Royal Commission's Report are recommended reading for his students. Probably the answer would be no, because statements of clear principle and vision would be anathema to the technicians of the Economics Department.
The learned Professor says he has no expertise (and obviously bugger-all concern) in the field of Social Security. I think that if he was put on an old-age benefit and had to go through the human degredation of a supplementary means test he would develop some 'expertise' about Social Security pretty quickly. I don't say that to personally insult the Professor but to show him what Peter Wilson meant by his accusation of 'class bias'. Insulting, may be, to the Professor, but none the less true.
— Neil McConachy.