The lie of neoliberalism is that unregulated markets lead to competitive utopia.
They lead to an elite corporate oligarchy who ensure their dominance via duopoly or monopoly. A plutocratic cartel who amputate monopoly rentals from the economy and call it business.
The brutal strength of the State is required to step in and break up such cartels when they bubble to the top and that’s exactly what the Commerce Commission must demand in its reports on the Supermarket duopoly in NZ.
Countdown and Foodstuffs will find out next week whether they may have to sell off some of their stores or change their businesses to help make way for a new supermarket company.
Price controls on some “essential items” such as fruit and vegetables and cheese, might even be on the table, Consumer NZ chief executive Jon Duffy said.
The Commerce Commission is due to publish its draft market study into the $22 billion groceries industry on Thursday.
Duffy said it was a “no brainer” that the regulator would recommend new mandatory rules that will give more rights to food suppliers in their dealings with supermarkets.
Just like we created Kiwi Bank (and should expand it) to break up an Aussie banking cartel, we should force Countdown and Foodstuffs to sell stores to the Government so the Government can inject actual competition into the super market industry with a strict policy on local producers getting better prices, with staff paid the living wage and customers getting cheaper prices.
So what if the Supermarket duopoly have to share their $22billion annual market with us New Zealanders? Shouldn’t we be feeding us?
Let’s be clear, this isn’t socialism, this is the State forced to repair capitalism once again by intervening in a broken market.
Farmers get ripped off, customers get screwed and staff are run ragged.
All so Australian corporations get to clip the ticket?
Government should enter into a deal with Iwi to stock a new chain of Government/Iwi Supermarkets that champion local produce at better prices for the consumer and
We need a kiwi subsidy on all local produce to recognize that producers have already used water and created local climate changing gases to create their product and as such consumers have already paid a price just to get the product to their table.
We should feed the 5million here first before boasting about feeding 40million world wide!
People are going hungry even though New Zealand produces enough food to feed 40 million – and it’s spurring calls for the country to “feed the five million first”.
Poverty researcher Dr Rebekah Graham said while working on her thesis on food insecurity, she interviewed a woman who walked for 90 minutes each day to get a free community meal.
A state owned 3rd supermarket chain would do more for providing a cheaper means of living to all kiwis who have food security issues. It would do more for welfare than any single PM since Savage.
History is calling Labour. To date you have had nothing to show beyond crisis responses. We still have 190000 kids in poverty, over 22000 on emergency housing lists, growing inequality and a climate crisis with no real solutions.
A state owned supermarket chain that radically forced competition on base level cost of living for a vast swathe of New Zealanders would be a legacy worthy of Labour.
We need to be kinder to individuals and crueler to corporations.
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