Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Where We Going Bud?

Why are we, New Zealand, even negotiating a free trade agreement with China? We should be telling them to get fucked, not buying more of their crap. Look, I don't really need to go into the background of all this (Tibet, sweat shop labour, Indonesian rainforests), but what is in it for us? Really? What is there?

We buy their stuff to fill up the $2 Shop and The Warehouse with rubbish our kids break before they even get it home, using more resources, we tacitly support their regime, we make their rich folks richer and do nothing for the poor bastards working in the factories.

How much New Zealand made goods will they buy in return? My guess is fuck all. The government says $500 million. Now I may be an idiot, but where exactly does this come from? I guess it means they'll buy wood, ship it to China, turn it into flimsy patio furniture and then ship it back here to sell in our shops. Can't we do it here ourselves? Obviously not.

Ethics don't come into it. The loss of jobs here, exploitation of workers in China, the hidden, environmental, cost of shipping wood to China and back for what? Furniture that breaks as soon as we sit our fat arses in it? Dumb doesn't even come into it.

The Olympic organising committee (supported by the government's silence) are now telling our athletes they can't say anything even remotely seen as critical of the Chinese regime while they are at the Olympic Games. Fuck free speech, eh guys?

What are we afraid of? That they'll invade us? They won't be our friends? They'll stop sending us their plastic toys and flimsy furniture? GET REAL.

New Zealand used to stand up for itself on the world stage (remember French nuclear testing?), now it's all about money and greed, fuck the people and fuck the ethics. This is from a Labour government that now has a National opposition saying that the Prime Minister is being 'responsible' in our reaction to the repression in Tibet and not stirring things up so close to signing a Free Trade Agreement. Makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand up on end.

On the international front: I'm disappointed Barack Obama didn't take the opportunity to say: "Yeah, well, Pastor Wright has his own way of saying things, but FUCK YOU, there are reasons why 9/11 happened, we have been pricks overseas, there has been a history of racism in America, we do have social injustice. We need to fix these things, not deny them." Instead he's disassociating himself from his spiritual mentor of two decades. The plot thins.

On the local front: How come I didn't know about the NORML bus coming to New Plymouth yesterday? Fuck.


JPW said...

Welcome back to the blogosphere (Cracktown, WWW), my friend.

ABAT said...

Cheers mate. Good to be back. The writing urge has just been getting to strong of late. Time to get some of my shit out.

Townser said...

Abat, you could substitute the word America instead of New Zealand throughout your post and it would be completely relevant to our situation. I work in the horticulture industry (no, not what you think unfortunately) and the large retailers like Wal-Mart are paring down their nursery stock because they have to actually compete with local small businesses for product. They're pissed because they can't ship live trees on container ships out of China.

Thanks for the link. I will reciprocate.

ABAT said...

Hey Townser, cheers for the words. Yeah, this whole global trade thing is just a fucking excuse to exploit people and it's making me angry.
I love the horticultural trade (exactly what you think!) Nearly that time of year again down here. Oh yeah!

I'll flesh out your link when I can think of something good (just Townser ain't enough). Any ideas?

Townser said...

I should probably consider a move into the profitable side of the horticulture business. Unfortunately, while the earning potential is huge, the downside is a little disconcerting.

No ideas on the link. The blog has been described as strange and confessional. Both fairly apt.

ABAT said...

Strange and confessional it is then!

You guys have got some pretty heavy penalties for horticultural pursuits. Dunno if it'd put me off growing my tomatos, but I'd probably think twice.