Thursday, April 7, 2011

[pima.nius] Re: Campaigner warns NZ over transnational ‘disease’ and trans-Pacific secret deals

3:29 PM |

For anyone wanting more background on this issue see Zeitgeist 2 -
start 20min in about Economic hitmen and how small countries are
enslaved to the new Fascist World Order. See;

On Apr 7, 6:35 am, pima news <> wrote:
>  Campaigner warns NZ over transnational 'disease' and trans-Pacific secret
> deals
> Pacific Media Centre, Yvonne Brill
> 6 April, 2011
> New Zealand is at risk from the "disease" of transnational corporations and
> New Zealanders need to unite in a formidable force of people power to defeat
> it, says advocate Murray Horton.
> Speaking at the opening of his "New Zealand is NOT for sale" national tour
> at AUT University's Pacific Media Centre last night, Horton equated the
> privatisation of state assets and trade agreements that favour transnational
> corporations with a disease.
> "We're all dealing with the symptoms of the same disease, and it's the
> diseases we need to tackle", said Horton, organiser of the Campaign Against
> Foreign Control of Aotearoa (CAFCA).
> A long-time activist and writer, Horton's public seminar harshly criticised
> the New Zealand government for on-going attempts to privatise state assets
> and other assets by foreign transnational corporations in what he called
> "disadvantageous 'free' trade and foreign investment agreements".
> His main issue was the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement – a multilateral
> agreement on trade between New Zealand and the United States, which Horton
> says is currently being negotiated in secret.
> "[The TPPA is] fundamentally undemocratic in the way in which it is being
> negotiated", says Horton. "MPs will not get a vote on the TPPA, not until
> after it has already been signed, anyway".
> [image: Murray Horton at last night's seminar. Photo: Alex Perrottet/PMC]
> Murray Horton at last night's seminar. Photo: Alex Perrottet/PMC
> Horton warned that many trade agreements worked to usurp the power
> governments had to limit foreign ownership or investment in their country.
> "These agreements…are only superficially about trade, 'free' or otherwise.
> They all come with an accompanying foreign investment agreement which is
> quite often more important than the trade component," he said.
> *'Investor rights'*
> Horton told the packed seminar room that among other dangers, the TPPA
> included a provision for "investor rights".
> This meant that companies from the signatory countries could sue the
> governments of other countries if the companies felt that they had been
> disadvantaged in their ability to function within that country in any way.
> He cited as an example proposed changes to the liquor laws that target RTDs
> - the alcopops aimed at young drinkers.
> Despite the negative social issues that are associated with youth and binge
> drinking, provisions in already signed trade agreements would limit New
> Zealand's ability to make changes to its own liquor laws.
> Horton said that by targeting one type of alcohol over another, New Zealand
> would be in breach of its obligations under trade agreements signed with
> Australia and the World Trade Organisation.
> He said that the same issues applied when it came to other industries, such
> as tobacco and pharmaceuticals, and that the emphasis on "investor rights"
> over the welfare of the people, combined with increasing foreign investment
> and ownership in state assets was not ideal.
> [image: PMC director Dr David Robie at the seminar. Photo: Alex
> Perrottet/PMC]
> PMC director Dr David Robie at the seminar. Photo: Alex Perrottet/PMC
> Horton said that ownership was power and cited Prime Minister John Key as
> recognising this yet failing to act in the best interests of maintaining
> power.
> "John Key has said that he doesn't want New Zealanders to become tenants in
> their own country. Well he is doing his best to bring that about," said
> Horton.
> *Past campaigns*
> An eclectic audience turned up to hear Horton speak, and many were keen to
> get the stalwart activist's opinion on issues close to their heart.
> Asked by one audience member about accusations of racism that had dogged
> past campaigns to do with opposing foreign ownership bids from non-English
> speaking countries, Horton joked: "We [CAFCA] are equal opportunity haters,
> we hate all foreigners".
> He added that the main culprits in New Zealand were American and Australian
> transnationals.
> [image: Part of the crowd at the seminar. Photo: Alex Perrottet/PMC]
> Part of the crowd at the seminar. Photo: Alex Perrottet/PMC
> Having mentioned this point earlier in his address, Horton reaffirmed that
> his argument was not against the people of any country - only their
> governments and transnational corporations.
> He stressed that, for CAFCA, immigration was not the issue
> Horton spoke as a call to arms for New Zealanders to educate themselves
> about the TPPA and issues to do with foreign ownership in their country.
> He championed the cause, saying "we're confronting the most powerful
> institutions in the country and in the world, but we've beaten them before
> and we'll beat them again… we have nothing to hide and truth is on our side.
> We are many and they are few."

pacific islands media association
aotearoa, new zealand
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