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Tell Gluckman he’s dreaming and why George Monbiot is the only answer

By   /  April 15, 2019  /  16 Comments

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We need a publicly accessible virtual town hall to debate issues like adults, not trigger free safe space echo chambers.  Without that the electorate will continue to remain one dominated by the sleepy hobbits of muddle Nu Zilind. 

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If you as a writer haven’t at least once faced a secret police trial using secret police evidence in your fight against abuse of police power, you’re not doing it right

Former scientific apologist to the National Government, Sir Peter Gluckman isn’t happy…

Sir Peter Gluckman: Today’s democracy needs some difficult conversations
We are at a critical time as a species. The world is undergoing the biggest transformation arguably since the agricultural revolution and certainly since the Enlightenment and industrial revolution.

…long story short, he says we have deep problems that demand intelligent debate.

Tell Gluckman he’s dreaming.

Yes we have huge problems.

Yes we need debate.

No it ain’t happening.

This is a country that has The AM Show, The Project, Seven Sharp, Leighton Fucking Smith, ZB, Hosking, Heather Duplicitous, Bazza Soper and Kate Hawkesby as the mainstream media.

Could you imagine any one of those media outlets or Pundits even attempting to grapple with the intellectual ramifications of what George Monbiot says?


The Project are incapable of saying the word neoliberalism let alone debating it. Jessie would need to cry to help the audience understand it.

When the media aren’t infantile or right wing lunatics, it’s elitist crap on Radio NZ or undeserved smugness on The Spinoff TV.

All this debate is transpiring on social media platforms algorithmically designed for virtue signalling outrage olympics and contaminated by millennial culture micro aggression policing which is far too busy calling each other out on wokeness protocols while making narrow temple identity politics alienate any possible democratic majority by alienating voters.

That was a long fucking paragraph.

We need a publicly accessible virtual town hall to debate issues like adults, not trigger free safe space echo chambers.  Without that the electorate will continue to remain one dominated by the sleepy hobbits of muddle Nu Zilind with low imagination thresholds spooked by vaccinations and eclipses.



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  1. Nic Beets says:

    I so totally agree but am at a bit of a loss. Any suggestions on how it can happen Martyn?

  2. Dave Brown says:

    Actually neither Gluckman or Monbiot will do – “going straight to the heart of capitalism” means nothing unless you find the heart and know how to stop it. We can’t spend time debating when the vast majority knows we have to act yet not how to act.

    XR have got the method. Non-violent direct action (NVDA) at governments until they act. But act how? You can be sure they will act to suppress NVDA as soon as it looks like shutting down governments. Governments that are committed to saving capitalism (in their dreams) must smash all opposition movements that pose a threat to their power.

    Yet youth, mobilised by XR and school strikes are capable of testing that reaction and learning from it. When the state abandons democracy to label the opposition ‘terrorists’, they will learn that “going to the heart” means giving capitalism a ‘heart attack’.

    It means overthrowing the power which flows from ownership of the means of production which forces workers to work to make profits for the bosses. And which is today going into a destruction terminal decline.

    So the power of the opposition will shift from the streets and NVDA to sites were workers can defend their power, to strikes and occupations of workplaces, strategic organisation like the media, and the creation of workers organs like assemblies and councils with their own means of defence.

    These sites allow workers to mobilise their class power against the state in such as way as they can protect it against the state forces thrown at them. They enforce their power by closing down the economy and at the same time building an alternative economy that expropriates capitalist property and turns it into common property that can be used to plan production for human need and not profits greed.

    That is why the only alternative to extinction is survival socialism.

    • Nitrium Nitrium says:

      There is nothing illegal about a general strike (and it is entirely non-violent). If no one works, no tax revenue is created, the beast is starved, and subsequently change is assured. However, governments have imo very deliberately created false divisions among citizens such that the whole population will never strike for fear of accidentally supporting “the wrong side”. “Left” vs “Right” is really just Orwellian double-speak to create irrational disagreement to deliberately assure that no-common ground can ever be found by the general population to achieve meaningful change. Hence status quo regardless of which “side” you vote for.
      I won’t be voting next election (and probably never again).

      • Dave Brown says:

        Nitrium. Strikes and general strikes are always violent. Even legal picket lines in NZ are routinely broken by the police and any resistance is meet by arrest, often violent. In the 1913 general strike the military were deployed with machine guns. The 1912 Waihi strike was broken by scabs backed by armed police leading to the death of Fred Evans. The 1951 lockout involved the use of troops as scabs on the wharves and mines and emergency laws to isolate and repress the unions and their public support.

        All of this shows that workers when mobilised around their class interests are not fooled by your arguments that classes are the creation of phoney left and right divisions in the nation. No these class divisions are built into capitalism as a social relation that allows capitalists to exploit workers. That is why class struggle is the motor of NZ’s white settler colonial history, and why it is also the answer to Aotearoa/NZ’s future.

    • John W says:

      Leave vestiges of capitalism in a replacement system and you will end up with capitalism.

      It would be like leaving a fox in a corner of the hen house.

      It is a predatory system.

      Time is running out.

      Community is the strength for survival not wealth harvested by a few who tell you how to think through media control and coercion.

  3. Siobhan says:

    One thing the BBC do better than us..’Question Time’.
    Not that its without its problems, but given the low bar on political coverage and ability for the public/politicians to discus issues rather than just feeding out sound bites and PR platitudes, its not so bad.

    If Labor had any intention of reseting the country, economically, socially, whatever, they would take a firm hand on Public Radio and TV and encourage programing that is designed to inform and critique, rather than just following the ‘entertainment’ model. Which they insist on telling us is ‘what people want’. then sit around wondering why viewership is endlessly drifting away.

  4. Shawn says:

    I agree we need better and more in depth debates. I’m less inclined to agree with Monbiot, at least as far as the quote goes.

    Capitalism is not necessarily the problem, and overthrowing is not necessarily the answer. The problem is the kind of capitalism we have. Neo-liberalism is a fundamentalist version of capitalism inspired by the extremist and fringe Austrian School of economics. Like all forms of economic fundamentalism, whether of the left or right, it reduces the complexity of reality into simplistic dogmas, and applies those dogmas with a zealotry that ignores contrary evidence. Socialism, in it’s pure form, makes the same mistake.

    Social Democracy, the mixed economy, avoids this by taking the best of capitalism, and the best of socialism, and fuses them into something more pragmatic and workable. It’s not perfect, no economic system ever will be, but it has the best track record of providing economic growth, and providing for a more egalitarian society at the same time.

    • Dave Brown says:

      Shawn, totally idealist reasoning. If social democracy combines the ‘best’ of socialism with the ‘best’ of capitalism, how do you explain that they end up with the same result – the ongoing, worsening, destructive exploitation of the working class by the capitalist class.

      What is good about social democracy increasing the rate of exploitation of workers to drive up profits and repressing workers resistance to this? In 1919 when Social Democracy allied itself with the German bourgeoisie still subservient to the landed ruling class to form a government that then smashed the armed mutinies and strikes of soldiers and sailors exhausted by war.

      Fear of real socialism drives social democracy into the arms of dictatorships. It continues today as social democracy shits on its historical working class base and becomes just another populist/liberal/centrist face of capitalism which can no long get away with presenting itself as a phoney alternative to the dark, brutal face of capitalism bent on ecological destruction.

      • John W says:

        Well said
        The culprits in NZ are plainly out there denying environment ahead of their profit and pleading an “economic” necessity that we all perish.
        Business NZ actively stopped progress towards Govt action to address climate shift, further environmental destruction more than a decade ago. How do we punish these bastards who work against our interests.

      • Shawn says:

        “Shawn, totally idealist reasoning.”

        No, it’s pragmatic reasoning based on historical and real world evidence.

        “how do you explain that they end up with the same result – the ongoing, worsening, destructive exploitation of the working class by the capitalist class.”

        If you look at Scandinavian countries, or Germany, I don’t think that’s a reasonable assessment. Sweden for example has no minimum wage and does not need one because unions are strong and play a major role in setting wages. Their strength forces business to treat workers fairly.

        “Fear of real socialism drives social democracy into the arms of dictatorships.”

        Since when has any Scandinavian country been a dictatorship? And which of them looks likely to be so in the future? Your one example of Germany ignores specific issues that were unique at the time, not the least of which was the potential threat of Soviet Communism, Germany’s humiliating loss of WW1, and the Treaty of Versailles. None of those issues are relevant outside of Germany in the inter-war period.

        Overall, Social Democracy has a proven track record that “pure” socialist countries do not, especially in creating broad based wealth, relatively egalitarian societies, protecting democracy, and avoiding tyranny.

        • John W says:

          Shawn and interesting conclusion.

          Assumptions made about Scandinavia may not universally apply elsewhere.

          The culture and history of a people as well as the resources present tend to dictate likely shapes of outcomes.

          Its a complex mix.

          The so called Treaty of Versailles was an imposed blueprint for WWII.

  5. Sid Knee says:

    Pretty good case for an environmental anti-capitalism is to be found here if anyone is interested http://awsm.nz/2019/03/12/can-extinction-rebellion-aotearoa-nz-help-save-the-world/

  6. countryboy says:

    Brilliant work @ MB.
    George Monbiot’s a deep and dangerous threat. To those who think that the analytical part of the brain should remain filled to the brim with pap, sparkle, arse, surgery gibberish, humourless cruelties for a laugh and video clips of kittens getting frights at cucumbers. ( Which, I’m sad to say I think IS funny. I know. Special place in Hell for me etc. )
    This, on RNZ this morning.
    The King of Junk Pimps. Alibaba’s Jack Ma. The plastic from Jacks Junk is found at the bottom of the deepest oceans and in the most remote ice on Earth. And he has a personal wealth of $40 billion dollars. Presumably U$A dollars. If so, that’s $59 billion AO/NZ dollars. ( Is that right??)


    What do we do with people like little jack? We NEVER, EVER buy his junk EVER again.
    We must re nationalise our assets, write off ALL mortgages and purge AO / NZ of foreign banker trading.
    AND! (I’m on a roll) OUR Government SHOULD create a countrywide scheme to educate people, all people, ( I know older people who can’t decide which end of a hammer to hold while they try to hammer in a screw.) in a fundamental way, in being able to grow food by understanding climate variations from region to region, on how to ocean-fish, on how to mill a pine tree then build a house, on the basic use of sustainable electricity generation, of how to build a localised R/T com’s network, of how to repair and maintain the Toyota and of how to saddle up the Unicorn and ride over that rainbow. Because the aforementioned will never happen while the likes of jack the little ripper has his $40 billion and enough minions rendered mindless by his effusing their minds with logical fallacy gibberish into working 12 hrs a day 6 days a week to make the pollutants that we buy to kill ourselves off. “ But it sparkles! “
    Is that not correct @ SIR steve tindal? ‘Where everyone gets a bargain’ I bet you have Jack Ma’s picture pinned up on your bedroom wall.

  7. John W says:

    Gluckman – the john key puppet.

    Scientist ? He is a pediatrician.

    BBC – a much censored and controlled tool of the UK elite.

    George Monbiot is a trier and a breath of fresh air in his rebellion and refusal to hide so much common sense. George is a journalist or reporter but not a scientist. He deserves enormous credit for his work.

    Science is a wide playground and no one scientist can attempt to cover the fields of discovery open to examination.

    Our home grown rebel speaks for many in the academic scientific community from whom he has many awards and accolades , about the crazy silence being foisted on Kiwis regarding the imminent urgency to stop allowing NZ to continue down a path of collapse we will not recover from.

    The collapse can be slowed and some mitigation may be possible but Gluckman and Business NZ along with current politicians don’t even recognise the obvious changes ahead.

    It is not a matter of “economics” which are often discussed. The “economics” don’t matter. The present “economic” model relies on money “growth” which is a matter of ingrained blind stupidity, but the Business NZ holy grail. There is no future in following such a path or arguing about its viability.

    The real driver of NZ’s future is use of energy, which has to reduce by at least 6 to 10% per annum.

    Everything else has to be adjusted around this vital energy use reduction. There is more to it that what is show in the video but the case there is plain enough looking at two aspects.

    This video should be compulsory viewing for all Kiwis.


    2019 04 04 Mike Joy Biophysical Limits to Growth – google if my link doesn’t work.

    There is also much more to be discussed about changing what is happening in NZ.

    We don’t need to rely on the world as we don’t control the world. We can control much more of what is happening here but opposition will be fierce as off shore money at present controls much of NZ and our politicians.

    We need more brave scientists who will speak out and critical minds to listen and take aboard the elucidation offered. A new conversation can begin.

    We don’t need any apologists for capitalism. Kiwis are already indoctrinated with a capitalist mindset from which they need some freedom and alternatives.

    National and other right wing fascist elements don’t want any message from science to impede their exploitation of Kiwis nor to interfere with environmental destruction for business profit, which is rampant.

    Nats demolished our Kiwi grown state run DSIR, which was managed by by scientist, exploring those areas of research that Scientists thought were needed for the good of NZ, the land, the people, the long term management and resilience with maximum sustainability. The DSIR contributed a raft of information and initiatives that laid foundation for out present industries, land management and agricultural development.

    DSIR were doing an in depth mapping of NZ soils which, something that is vital to manage our long term management and our food supply. National scrapped that. Nothing of note done since. Scrapped!

    We see fertiliser use increasing and poisoning our soils and environment with NO science applied except that of off shore owned fertilzer company sales advice banked by bankers.

    Cadmium continues to rise in our soils as a result and the soil also become less fertile with the oil based “fertiliser” and mined phosphates.
    No DSIR to report on this publicly so little is said.

    The DSIR had a multi disciplinary team of Scientists looking at the Limits to Growth information and how NZ should respond to its long term planning in light of this revolutionary new perspective.
    Also scrapped as Business NZ did not like what the LTG report said so openly lied to the public about it. Those lies still are heard today.

  8. Keepcalmcarryon says:

    Get back to me when you support more than a sham 48 hr submission time to get sensible gun laws.
    Otherwise this smoking jacket wearing, socialist club, vic uni politics student posturing on grown up discussions just looks like what it is.

  9. sumsuch says:

    Utility is the origin of beauty, here as eloquence.

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