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Large American Pot, Meet Small Chinese Kettle

By   /  July 20, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  29 Comments

IRONICALLY, THE CONCERN over Chinese influence in New Zealand is being raised against a backdrop of unchallenged American hegemony. Extending across the whole width of the nation’s political stage, this American backdrop has become so much a part of the play’s scenery that most Kiwis no longer notice it. The inclusion of a few Chinese props, however, is enough to induce something close to panic among New Zealand’s political class.

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Zionist-Inspired Definition Of Antisemitism Deployed Against Jeremy Corbyn.

By   /  July 19, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  28 Comments

THE NEW ZEALAND LEFT is not alone in being torn apart by what should and should not be tolerated. Only yesterday, the British Labour Leader, Jeremy Corbyn, was publicly upbraided for being “an antisemitic racist” by Margaret Hodge, a senior British Labour MP. Hodge was furious that Labour’s National Executive Committee (NEC) has refused to accept, in full, the definition of antisemitism issued by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA).

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An Inconvenient Truth About Free Speech Denialism

By   /  July 17, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  73 Comments

Nothing could be more helpful to the cause of the Right than a Left which has lost its faith in the people. What, after all, is more likely to cause the people to lose faith in the Left than a nagging suspicion that their self-appointed liberators regard them as being either too vicious or too stupid to grasp the arguments in favour of individual freedom and social justice without instruction from above?

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Free Speech Denialism Is Fascism In Action

By   /  July 12, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  74 Comments

IT HAS BEEN DISPIRITING, this past week, to learn how little people who consider themselves leftists know about fascism.

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The Costa Rican Solution

By   /  July 12, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  23 Comments

GOLRIZ GHARAMAN, the Greens’ defence spokesperson has castigated her coalition partners for purchasing four Boeing P-8 maritime surveillance aircraft to replace the Air Force’s ageing fleet of Orions. Her stance is more-or-less in keeping with the Green Party’s pacifist leanings, but Gharaman’s objections to the aircraft’s war-fighting capabilities raises the more interesting question of why the party needs a defence spokesperson at all?

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Do We Really Lack the Courage to Debate the Alt-Right? Do We Really Lack the Ideas to Defeat Them?

By   /  July 10, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  96 Comments

Over the past few days Molyneux and Southern have very skilfully tested our tolerance – and we have failed. They’ve also tested our ability to re-state, re-affirm and justify our commitment to freedom of expression. We failed that test too.

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What’s Wrong With Today’s Journalists?

By   /  July 6, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  35 Comments

THERE’S SOMETHING WRONG with New Zealand journalists. For the best part of three decades our universities and polytechnics have been churning-out graduates who, at least in theory, should be the best-educated, best-prepared and most ethical journalists this country has ever produced. It must break the hearts of these graduates’ academic mentors to see how little of what they have attempted to inculcate in their charges has taken.

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Keeping Power Homeless

By   /  July 5, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  36 Comments

WHERE DO WE GO when both the market and the state have been weighed in the balance and found wanting? How much better-off would the peoples of the world be if, instead of the towering ziggurats of global capitalism, their skylines were dominated by the equally absurd wedding-cake skyscrapers of global socialism? Would the planet be any less ravaged? Would bureaucracy be any less oppressive? Would the individual feel any freer – or less crushed?

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The Political Logic Of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

By   /  July 3, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  22 Comments

Red-baiting is about to get a new lease on life.

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Employers On The Warpath

By   /  June 29, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  13 Comments

He’s a weak link that Iain Lees-Galloway. Ever since he backed away from his party’s solemn promise to repeal the hated “Hobbit Law”, it’s been clear that the guy isn’t what you’d call a tower of union-backing strength. Word is that the MBIE bureaucrats had him house-trained in a matter of days.

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Father Of Nightmares

By   /  June 28, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  76 Comments

Trump’s press secretary, Sarah Sanders, is asked to leave the Little Red Hen restaurant in Virginia and liberal America cheers. But then the awful thought strikes them. What if Trump’s supporters decide to do something similar?

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Does The National Party Know Anything About Genuine Conservatism?

By   /  June 25, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  22 Comments

IF THE NATIONAL PARTY was a genuine conservative party, Simon Bridges would no longer be its leader. In a genuine conservative party, the outcry against his performance on Radio Hauraki last Friday (22/6/18) would have extracted his resignation within 24 hours. A great many voices would have joined the outcry against Bridges’ boorish denigration of the prime minister and her family, and for a great many reasons. Let’s examine just a few of them.

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Emotion, Not Reason, Is Driving New Zealanders’ Attitudes Towards Crime And Punishment

By   /  June 22, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  8 Comments

It was the famous English jurist, Sir William Blackstone, who said: “It is better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer.” It is perhaps the greatest achievement of New Zealand’s Sensible Sentencing Trust that the present reality of dozens of innocent persons spending months in remand cells for offences they will later be acquitted of does not enrage the New Zealand public. Their motto would appear to be: “It is better that ten innocent people remain locked-up than that one guilty person re-offends on bail.”

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New Zealand’s Very Own Pinkertons

By   /  June 20, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  12 Comments

THE POLITICAL SCANDAL swirling around the private detective agency Thompson & Clark Investigations Ltd (TCIL) lays bare capitalism’s rawest nerves.

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Can The Nurses Win On Their Own?

By   /  June 19, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  33 Comments

In an economy where roughly half the paid workforce have not had a pay-rise for close to two years, will the Nurses’ Organisation’s demand for an immediate, across the board, 11 percent increase strike the average Kiwi as “about right” or “too much”. With an experienced registered nurse’s salary set to rise from $66,755 to $77,386 by December next year under the present offer, will the two-thirds of workers who earn considerably less than that sum (in 2016 the median NZ income was just $48,800) regard the union’s proposed strike action as reasonable – or unreasonable?

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If Labour Wants Fewer Prisoners, Then It Needs To Create More Prison Space – Not Less

By   /  June 15, 2018  /  Chris Trotter, Most Recent Blogs, Setting The Agenda  /  30 Comments

STUPIDITY ON STILTS. How else should the decision-making on Waikeria Prison be characterised. From practically every perspective, the Labour-led government’s determination not to proceed with the construction of a new 3,000-bed “mega-prison” was flawed. Most particularly (and most worryingly) it demonstrated the Cabinet’s inability to think politically. When your business is politics-at-the-highest-level, that’s a very serious flaw indeed.

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