Monday, April 20, 2015

letter from Hone

“The last time I was in Canberra was for SORRY DAY 2008, when I listened to Kevin Rudd apologise to generations of Aboriginal people for the theft of their lands, the destruction of their culture, and the dehumanising of their people” said Hone Harawira, leader of the MANA Movement of Aotearoa (NZ).
“Today I am back in Canberra during ANZAC WEEK 2015, and I am reminded that television channels, radio stations and print media on both sides of the Tasman are full of the remarkable stories of courage and heroism exhibited by the Australian and New Zealand Army Corp during World War One, right across the Western Front of the European campaign, and the beaches, hills and trenches of Gallipoli” said Harawira, “And as it happens, to cement that union of battle, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott is today unveiling a memorial to Australian soldiers who died in WW1, at Pukeatua Memorial Park in Wellington, New Zealand” said Harawira.
“But today, as he unveils a memorial to the mindless destruction of a century ago, Tony Abbott is quietly drawing a veil across the genocide being committed by his own government in Western Australia through the enforced closure of remote Aboriginal communities.
Genocide is defined under the Convention on the Prevention of Genocide as (e) forcibly transferring children of one group to another, and (c) deliberately inflicting on one group, conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part through measures such as:
  • removing children from their families,
  • cutting off basic medical needs,
  • ignoring needs for basic infrastructure such as public transport,
  • labelling remote communities as breeding grounds for paedophilia,
  • taking away community work programs,
  • neglecting aboriginal housing programs, and
  • withholding and freezing bank accounts.
The forced closure of Aboriginal communities is genocide – plain and simple – something that colonialistshave been trying to do ever since their arrival, originally through the gunbarrels of white settlers and now through the legislation of overwhelmingly white governments.
Although the United Nations recognises the overwhelming authority of the Indigenous people to the land of Australia, it seems that Australian governments simply refuse to accept the reality of their continued racism.
When John Howard introduced the hated Northern Territory Intervention Plan back in 2007, he earned the universal animosity of Indigenous people the world over as “a racist bastard imposing racist policies on a people who are not in a position to fight back”
Tony Abbott’s backing of Western Australia’s Closure of Remote Communities in 2015 is exactly the same, and deserves exactly the same response – “Tony Abbott is a racist bastard imposing racist policies on a people who are not in a position to fight back”
White Australian governments happily dumped Aboriginals into the outback, out of sight and out of mind – until they realised that they had inadvertently given them rights to millions of acres of land beneath which sat vast deposits of billion dollar minerals and oils.
The Intervention Plan, and now the Closure of Remote Communities, is genocide with a blunt instrument – put an end to Aboriginal title by forcing them from their land, let the big mining companies bully their way in, and force the Indigenous people to take their case to court where they stand no chance of ever winning.
As the leader of the MANA Movement in Aotearoa (NZ), I join with indigenous leaders across Australia and the Pacific in condemning the Closure of remote Communities, and I call on all those who support justice to join in the Day of Action to Stop the Forced Closure of Aboriginal Communities on May 1, both here in Australia and back in New Zealand.
If the ANZAC spirit truly lives 100 years after the defence of the British Empire, let it be in the defence of our own indigenous communities in 2015.
Hone Harawira
MANA Leader
Canberra

Friday, April 10, 2015

your display is offensive

These incidents upset me - so much has been taken from indigenous people all around this world, yet it is not enough, they still want more, they want everything.
Nearly 1000 people have signed a petition to have a Native American doll removed from an Auckland mini golf course display.
The doll, that has been labelled a "grotesque caricature", is part of the Lilliputt Around the World Minigolf course at Sylvia Park shopping centre and depicts a Native American man sitting in a tepee...
Rachel Hopkins, a member of the Kiowa Tribe of Oklahoma said she could not see a way to make the display culturally appropriate. 
"The point here is that the community decides how they are represented, and takes the lead in creating that, not the other way around," she said.
"And it's not about seeking permission after the fact." 
And that is the point, well made by Rachel. NO ONE gets to decide how indigenous people represent themselves, except members of the group themselves. This is a basic tenet that cannot be broken unless the group decides it can be. It cannot be seeking permission after the fact - don't bother - just take it down and start again. And starting means talking with the group you wish to represent. Otherwise it is just a continuation of the denigration and othering of indigenous people that happens everywhere.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

more going racist for ratings

Photoshopped images of "this year's Te Matatini winners, Te Whanau a Apanui from Opotiki" linked to by More FM will not be shown on this blog. Needless to say I agree with this
Willie Te Aho of Aotearoa Kapa Haka Limited described More FM as, “a bunch of thieving, silly and stupid people who need to get their heads inspected, perhaps even drug tested”... and "I'm disgusted with how More FM denigrated kapa haka and the mana of performers from Te Whanau a Apanui."
Yes it is racist, yes it is disrespectful, yes it is offensive and disgusting - although these photo manipulator know not what they do, that is just not good enough.
The images of Tiare Tawera and Rawiri Waititi were manipulated which saw their faces being moved to their stomachs and other faces being superimposed on their bodies as well as a number of other parody images of the individuals.
Terrible and a direct insult to Māori and these fine men.
While More FM has apologised and removed the post which was originally sourced from meme website Redit based in America, the images are still circulating on hundreds of websites and social media platforms online. 
Yep they will be there forever now - what a disgrace More FM - hang your bloody heads in shame - you have embarrassed yourselves and shown yourselves as simple lowlifes.

Go home - it is a safe place - make it so

We need to rethink a few things. Climate change is reality and so is peak oil and the effects of both along with the degradation and pollution we have wrought on Papatūānuku. There is a time of change upon us - we created it and we will have to live with and through it. We will have to give up some things but we will also gain a lot and the things we give up are not valuable whereas what we will gain is invaluable. To paraphrase JMG - collapse now and avoid the rush - or maybe collapse now while you can. Collapse? WTF! Yep and what it means is moving to a simpler lifestyle a more direct lifestyle from what we do to what we get. A reduction of all of the intermediary steps/jobs/people between what we do and what we get. Eating food grown locally for instance, rather than exotic stuff flown in from godknowswhere so that we, in our extravagant western lifestyles, can eat it. We are all going to have to make changes and Māori as indigenous people of this land can lead and show others how to do it.

Many Māori are on the way and programs like Manawa Hou are also invaluable - they show how we used to live and that knowledge of the past is essential to build our futures. It would take some wrangling but this idea from Rankin would be a good start
An economic historian is calling for the benefit system to become more flexible to allow people to function within traditional subsistence economies.Keith Rankin from Unitec was responding to a challenge from Mana leader Hone Harawira that the Abbott Government’s removal of support from remote Australian Aboriginal communities was similar to Work and Income’s policy of not paying benefits to Maori who return to their home rural villages.
He told Radio Waatea’s Dale Husband that being able to turn to a subsistence lifestyle during downturns in the economic cycle was a normal part of capitalism.
Instead of calling people to the cities, help them move out to the rural areas and pay the to do it. This would rejuvenate those areas, release pressure from the cities infrastructure, help reinforce connections and communities, teach the basics like how to grow food, how to live in a community, how to live simpler lifestyles and so on and so on. Many Māori are connecting back to their ancestral marae. This connecting can be encouraged and facilitated by Government for all of the reasons above. To further encourage the move I'd pay superannuation earlier to Māori going home so that they could learn and teach and build the mana of their marae and themselves.

The destruction of our currently structured society is likely to be slow, with falls, then plateaus, with false hope, then dashed dreams - we will live it and we will need to adjust to it, physically and mentally. Go home - it is a safe place - make it so.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Stop the forced closure of Aboriginal Communities in Australia.

Stop the forced closure of Aboriginal Communities in Australia.

This battle to protect and stand with our indigenous brothers and sisters began with this
It has been six months since the federal government signed over funding responsibility for providing municipal and essential services to Western Australia’s 274 remote Indigenous communities to the state government and four since the WA premier, Colin Barnett, said between 100 and 150 of those communities faced “closure” because they were “not viable”.
On Tuesday, Tony Abbott further inflamed the situation by saying his government could not be expected to “endlessly subsidise lifestyle choices if those lifestyle choices are not conducive to the kind of full participation in Australian society that everyone should have”.
Tony Abbott is so bad he makes John Key look okay. Lifestyle choices??? The response has been sharp
The Aboriginal leader Noel Pearson has blasted Tony Abbott’s comments that living in a remote community is a lifestyle choice, saying it is a “deranged debate” conducted in a “substandard manner”... He described the comments as “shameless” and a “disgraceful turn of events”.
and
The chairwoman of the Aboriginal Health Council of Western Australia, Michelle Nelson-Cox, said Abbott’s comments were “hugely disappointing”.
“The prime minister’s comments about Aboriginal communities place no value on the connection to country and culture that these communities provide, nor the important role they play in the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal people,” she said.
“Aboriginal people are obligated to maintain a connection to country to sustain spiritual beliefs, customary activities and traditional lore. In addition to providing a home to many Aboriginal people, these communities provide a continuing sense of identity through this ongoing connection to country.”
This article dispels the myth of closing these communities because of sexual abuse.

And Gerry Brownlee
 denied co-leader of the Māori Party, Marama Fox leave from the House of Representatives to vote on a motion to condemn the Australian Government’s impending closure of remote indigenous communities in Western Australia.
What can we do from here to support our brothers and sisters over there?

Facebook site here  And here is a great profile of Sam Cook who is one of the leaders of the social media campaign.

March on 1 May to show support - will update soon.

UPDATE: Current A-Z listings of upcoming actions ‪#‎SOSBLAKAUSTRALIA‬

Thursday, April 2, 2015

whose left?

The dust is settling. Mana took a body blow by losing Hone from Parliament but the Mana Movement is still intact, and still fighting against inequality and imo will rise again, better, stronger and more politically astute. The kaupapa has not changed, the will to make change has not wilted nor will it because Mana activists live the reality of inequality every day along with the people.

Mana contested Northland and Rueben Taipari Porter didn't get many votes as expected but by fielding a candidate Mana showed they are still alive and kicking - and still have a great sense of humour - go here to read Rueben's thoughts.
With my stunning result of 55 votes, beaten even by the LegalizeCannab1s party, you would think that I would crawl under a rock andhide…But after studying the result figures I didn’t do too bad. FocusNorthland and the other candidates chose to vote strategically whileNational and Labour candidates got thrashed! Actually as the firstMana candidate to ever stand in any Northland General Election, Inever lost any majority so actually I came in 2nd to HonourableWinston Peters (haha that’s hilarious, but reality is what you make ofit ps phone calls are still coming in so who knows what goodies I canget for us aye?) and my trophy wall is filling up… butcongratulations to Winston, he ran an amazing campaign, it was aprivilege to participate in that historical election and watch himwork. I was watching very closely…
The win by Winston affects Mana but really only indirectly. The Mana Movement and NZF are after different voters and that is very good. The win by Winston does affect Labour and the Greens in the way I described in the last two posts and that affects the left including the Mana Movement. It is going to be interesting watching the developments. Winston has already said 
Winston Peters says he would support mining in Northland if the region benefited from at least 25% of the royalties.
sadly he is old school, focused on money and economics - I tend to agree with Haami on this one too
"He’s been a constant critic of Maori issues and of Maori communities and Maori organisations for decades now, so I wouldn't put him in the Maori MP category, he may have Maori ancestry. And also his party is the party that tried to introduce legislation to remove all references to the Treaty of Waitangi from New Zealand legislation so I don't think it's true to say he represents in any shape or form a Maori perspective," he says.
 Yep the Mana Movement and NZF are polls apart in so many ways.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

the stone in Winston

The Greens made a good choice in not standing a candidate in the Northland by-election but the win from Winston and NZF is not good news for them.

I like the Green Party and I'd be happy if they were dominant in Parliament but they aren't and they have some major issues to sort out notwithstanding Winston's win. They have to elect a new co-leader and that is a big one. Russel Norman is a very effective co leader - I have had issues with some of what he has said in the past but he does have gravitas and he speaks with authority. He can and does take the fight directly to National and he can look them in the eye with disdain whilst asking the hard questions. He will be very hard to replace and his replacement will have a very big job on their hands.

The Greens have a dilemma in that they have an eternal internal battle about what their kaupapa is. Yes the environment but social policy and economic policy are currently welded in there to. Some want them to concentrate on the environment and be available to work with both Labour and National - this would make them palatable to the 'middle' and dispel the meme that they are kooky, and others want a broad left approach to the issues of social and economic policy so that they remain true to their traditional constituency. The last election result where they at best held their ground provides reinforcement for both ideals and I don't know the answers or what they should do to be honest. I'm not sure what will move the balance and create momentum for a bigger presence in Parliament. You'd think that public self interest with the looming global issue of the effects of climate change and peak oil would guarantee votes for them but with the clamor of voices saying it's 'business as usual' shows that the basic drive for self preservation isn't being felt. Will it take a calamity, a disaster to move people? Probably, but by then it will be too late.

If NZF and Winston goes head to head with labour and National for the middle movable votes and achieves success then the Greens have a big problem electorally. NZF will cut the Greens out. If they become dominant they will cut them out directly, if, after the war of attrition, Labour retains it's position as the big 'left' party they will need the Greens but on their terms not the Greens terms and history has shown that Labour and the Greens aren't the buddy/buddy team that they could be. For the Greens to have influence they must get the votes and a 4 way competition for the 'middle' isn't going to give them those votes. The 'middle ' is not the solution, the 'middle' is the problem.

So big issues for the Greens that I hope they can resolve and become the force they need to be - the election of Winston Peters in Northland is not good for the Greens, not even slightly.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

the win in winston

Unintended consequences has been a concept on my mind recently - some thoughts on the recent by-election in Northland.

The election of Winston Peters in Northland will have unintended negative consequences for the left I think. The left as a whole and the individual parts of the left and I'll start with Labour.

As I've mentioned before I think the way Labour went about the Northland by-election was a mistake. The number of times I heard Labour people say - we can't win, we won't win, this un winnable - was depressing. Whether it was true or not is beyond the point - don't forget the big man key said Winston could and would never win - yet he did.

Okay let's assume that Labour could and never would win - what to do? Yes one option is to help Winston win with the view that giving National a 'bloody nose' is valuable because it will erode the win-meme attached to Key and Joyce and lead the way to a victory for Labour next election - that is certainly the line being used and now that Winston has won it will be interesting to see this meme develop. At this stage Key and Joyce are just pretending that they never lost and that it doesn't matter. Key is spinning it, "well I got it wrong and didn't expect Labour to capitulate and send their people to Winston" and Joyce is going, "yep you win some and lose some, that's politics..." I think their spin will work - it certainly has worked up to now with the almost continuous lying from Key and the almost continuous support he still receives. Time will tell on this one but it by no means certain that the winkeymeme is over or even really dented.

Labour missed a big opportunity to go hard, push Little out there and their candidate, push their policies, push their alternative Government meme - but they decided not to. Sure Prime will get a nice list placing and in 2.5 years is much more likely to get into Parliament. But Little and Labour have snapped a couple of arrows in their quiver - the moral high-ground over deals in Epsom around ACT and the Dunne electorate too. Everytime they go down that 'moral' road, Northland will be chucked in their face - even if it wasn't a deal and not really comparable to what National does - I just don't think the movable voter will care about those details. So Labour are going to have to do more of this 'strategic' dealing and i just can't see it going well for them - mainly because I do think they have more morals than National and as we've seen with Northland - it is difficult to front up and say it like it is especially when innuendo and nudge nudge are easier to do.

Andrew Little will need to be careful with Winston - their can be only one leader of the opposition and although Labour have the numbers, Winston has the ego, experience and wind in his sails after this win. He will get offended very quickly and dish out some smartarse remarks likely to get up Little's nose. The 2 of them are not going to get on I think - sure they'll pretend for a while but before too long the truth will out and that truth is that they are political rivals in a very direct way. Winston's age may be bought in but I would be careful about that because everyone's getting older. I'm calling that Winston will end up disliking Little as much as he does Key and that will be significant if the negotiations need to happen in 2.5 years.

Labour have let a wolf into the henhouse - National have received their bloody nose but they will heal. Labour may not heal from the win of Winston.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

choices made

I feel a zeal to begin blogging again but we'll see how we go lol.

Firstly congratulations to Winston Peters and NZF for the Northland win over the forces of the National Party. This really gives fantastic momentum to NZF and bodes well for them for future parliaments. I didn't like the labour campaign from day one - the slight of hand and whispering didn't really do it for me - but it did do it for labour supporters who moved their vote to Winston instead of the Labour candidate. Is this strategic voting? I'd say yes but for NZF not Labour and not the left. I remain unconvinced that Winston Peters and NZF will advance the left, especially the far left where I sit, and if any further convincing of that is needed the rumour mills are touting Shane Jones as a possible successor to Winston. Oh deary me - that would be diabolical if that happened although the 'middle' would probably love it - I'd rather have Ron Mark but time will tell.

The reason I think Labour will come to regret the decisions they made around this by-election are because as NZF ascends, I think Labour will descend. NZF are not going to get Green Party votes. They may get National Party votes but those votes are 'centre' votes - they wobble, they move. NZF are going to muscle into the 'middle' and they will take votes from both Labour and National but more from Labour I think, notwithstanding the relatively good start by Andrew Little - Labour's leader. The problem for him is that perception is reality. No more moral high ground over deals - even though this wasn't a deal, National have successfully spun it as one, the media have agreed. Another reason that Labour will descend is that it still is hanging on to so much deadwood that unless those people leave the Party is tainted - not just by Rogernomics but also the Clark years - those 9 years seem a long time ago now.

Anyway that is what I think about all that.

I've also taken a 2 week break from The Standard as a silent protest against Stephanie's ban on Murray. I like Murray and I like Stephanie's posts and I just feel that the ban was unnecessary. I do not feel it was a gender issue - it was just a bad call - although I can understand why Stephanie thinks it was. I respect The Standard authors and I didn't want to protest to them - that is inappropriate - but I did want to make a point and I did want to choose. In the past I have defended Stephanie because I have felt that she has received gender bias comments. I just don't think this was the situation in this case although I have to say some subsequent comments there have been offensive to me and sexist. So kia kaha Stephanie and see you in 2 weeks The Standard.


Monday, March 23, 2015

the last guide

the last guide

We climbed through clouds
the first day up to the pass
my body sang laments to
each stoney step and at the top
we went to sleep to a dire
ukulele strummed hard by
a german youth reliving a past

The wild kiwi slid through
the bush and we watched
and at Heaphy a Rangitāne
and I hongi, later a descendant
of Te Rauparaha and I kōrero
about the voices we hear here
where here enemies are friends

as I cradle my baby, home,
softly rocking and reaching for
another son to touch his head
and still his sighs, his mother,
my love, leans across my lap
and I realise the cadence of my
breath is still a walk, my pack

sits serenely on my shoulders

Monday, February 10, 2014

Waitangi day night - a poem

A poem for Waitangi day 2014



Waitangi day night

A queen sent emissaries
as I checked the rat trap
for a licker lover of
peanut butter inside the
ceiling of my whare
on Waitangi day night

That wasp stung me inside
my ear, I heard the vibrating
wings notch up but too
late my instinctual alarm
bell rang, too late for me
on Waitangi day night

Their paper home has grown
and my ear has swollen so i
cannot hear their voices
entreating the benefits of
a queen constantly begetting
on Waitangi day night

I huddle inside a fern now,
my old whare adorned with
photos of a queen, a tidal
current I see, head-high as
sweeping so clean, me
on Waitangi day night


Friday, November 1, 2013

underreported struggles 76, 77,and 78

More essential underreported struggles from Ahni at Intercontinental Cry.


Underreported struggles 76


The Belize Court of Appeal re-affirmed the Maya people’s rights to collective land ownership throughout southern Belize. This decision came just days after the Government gave US Capital Energy permission to conduct oil drilling inside the Sarstoon Temash National Park, the entirety of which is Maya ancestral land. The government of Belize is now being urged to end its persistent denial of the Maya's land rights and to implement the court decisions.

In a precedent-setting ruling that has national and international implications, Ontario Superior Court Justice Carole Brown ruled that a group of lawsuits against the Canadian mining company HudBay Minerals can proceed to trial even though the plaintiffs are from another country. The Maya Qeqchi turned to Canada’s court system over three separate injustices including the gang rape of 11 Maya Qeqchi women.

Yaqui Traditional Authorities initiated a road block on international highway 15 near the community of Vícam, in Sonora, Mexico. The action was in response to the state government’s refusal to stop the operation of the Independence Aqueduct which began to illegally extract water from the Yaqui River in March. The Yaqui are heavily dependent on the water from the Yaqui River, a fact that was identified in a Supreme Court (SCJN) resolution which ratified protection for the tribe pending an Environmental Impact Assessment (MIA), which is required to legally begin taking the water.

Underreported struggles 77

India's Dongria Kondh tribe overwhelmingly rejected plans by British mining giant Vedanta Resources for an open-pit bauxite mine on their sacred lands. A total of twelve Kondh villages unanimously voted against Vedanta's mine during a consultation process that was ordered by India's Supreme Court last April. The results of the consultations will now be considered by India's Ministry of Environment and Forests, who will have the final say on the mine—but few still believe the project will be given the green light.

In British Colombia, Canada, members of the well-known Klabona Keepers served Fortune Minerals Limited with a "24-hour eviction notice" informing the company that it must vacate the Tahltan's unceded traditional territory. Fortune Minerals ignored the deadline, leading the Tahltan activists to block the road leading to the site of the company's proposed open pit coal mine. The protesters then proceeded to occupy some of the company's drills.

In Sapmi--the traditional territory of the Saami Peoples--a group of indigenous and non-indigenous activists set up a roadblock to stop the UK-based mining company, Beowulf, from carrying out another drilling program in Kallak (Saami: Gállok), an area of great spiritual and cultural importance to the Saami Peoples. The blockade has been dismantled on several occasions; however, that hasn't deterred the activists from continuing to defend Sapmi.

Underreported struggles 78

The Wixarika People of Mexico and all others who hold Wirikuta to be sacred celebrated a major legal victory with the announcement that the federal court granted the suspension of all work on mining projects in the territory, including the projects of Canada's Revolution Resources and Frisco Mining Group, owned by Mexican tycoon, Carlos Slim. Under the court ruling, no further mining-related work may take place in the Wirikuta Natural Protected Area in San Luis Potosi until the legal case requesting an injunction against the concessions is resolved.

Evading the Indonesian navy, two tiny boats met near the Australia-Indonesia border to ceremonially reconnect the indigenous peoples of Australia and West Papua. The ceremony was the pinnacle of a 5000km journey beginning in Lake Eyre, in which sacred water and ashes were carried and presented to West Papuan leaders. The cultural exchange of Indigenous elders was held in secret, due to threats made by Indonesian government ministers and military officials who had stated that the navy and air-force would “take measures” against the peaceful meeting.

BriBri communities rejected a new government proposal to permit U.S. military incursions onto their lands in the remote area of Alto Telire in the county of Talamanca, Costa Rica. A Bribri leader condemned the proposal, arguing that such an action would threaten public safety and serve to militarize Bribri territory. According to the proposal, SOUTHCOM would enter and move throughout Bribri lands without prior consultation or consent in order to provide various Costa Rican agencies with direct access to communities in the region. Based in Miami, Florida, SOUTHCOM is the arm of the U.S. Department of Defense responsible for all U.S. military activities throughout Central and South America and the Caribbean.

Visit Intercontinental Cry to read about these issues and many others.

Monday, October 28, 2013

RIP Lou

I grew up on the music of Lou Reed and The Velvet Underground.

RIP Lou - I've chosen this song because it was so anti-establishment and it inspired many many songs from other bands that I grew to love too.

... and I guess that I just don't know...



Friday, October 25, 2013

the truth from Russell

This is spinning through social media at the moment and it is brilliant - thanks for being so articulate Russell



Thursday, October 24, 2013

our stories our way

Karol has written a good piece on The Standard about the plight of our movie industry - well worth a read. 

My comment was
personally I’d like to see more stories from our deep heritage. The stories of the land, of the people on the land – the heroes, the sacrifices, the naming of everything – I really can’t see why people wouldn’t be into it. But I’m not thinking doco’s I’m thinking ‘crouching tiger’ – action. Forget the America’s Cup and put the money into scriptwriting with tangata whenua.
It is worthwhile considering this and it's not so far fetched - it would take faith and generosity but our society as a whole would benefit. Tangata whenua would benefit, the film industry would benefit, we would have more mutual understanding and knowledge and fun. Actors, scriptwriters, extras, locals - it is hard to think of a group that wouldn't benefit really. Even discussing the idea might help us.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

ANG Press release

ABORIGINAL NEWS GROUP STATEMENT ON THE #MI'KMAQ / #ELSIPOGTOG CRISIS

A Communiqué from the ANG Public Information Bureau:

To the Sovereign People of the Independent Mi'kmaq Nation
To all Colonialised Peoples of the Fourth World

The Aboriginal News Group (ANG) wishes to extend its support and solidarity to the Indigenous warriors standing strong  in defence of Mi'kmaq / Elsipogtog territorial and human rights under Canadian occupation and against the unwanted exploitation of their lands. We recognise their peaceful protest as part of the international struggle in defiance of intentional acts of genocide undertaken against Indigenous / First Nations Peoples throughout the Fourth World and within the occupied territories of North America.

Clearly, the 'Indian Wars' are not over.

Aboriginal rights defenders and concerned residents who have taken non-violent, community control over a roadway that crosses through their Nation in protest of an environmental wipeout of Indigenous land were viciously attacked by Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) state security forces employing fear tactics; rubber bullets and tear gas aimed against unarmed Indigenous Peoples on their own territory. Unnecessary mass arrests of prominent protesters and and the seizing of personal computers and recording devices against (seemingly) targeted members of the independent media has also occurred.

This is not democracy. Nor is it benevolent colonialism.

This is genocide under the provisions of the 'Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide' : (Resolution 260 (III) A of the U.N. General Assembly on 9 December 1948)

And Canada (the 'Peaceful Country') is in blatant violation of these very basic human rights.

We have all watched (mostly in silence) how the Canadian tradition of colonialist exploitation and xenophobic self-centred  importance has resulted in the mass liquidation of millions of First Nations Peoples, legal and extra-legal racial segregation; punishing residential 'de-Indianising' schools; mass incarceration; widespread communal depression and the institution of socio-politically isolated Bantustans designed to rob Indigenous Peoples of our lands, our rights and our very dignity.

This is the basic formula of genocide.

The unapologetic use of state-sponsored violence, social coercion and subvert; psychological repression of speech; cultural and political expression in order to prevent the development of a viable, pan-Indigenous consciousness. In other words, the actions undertaken at Elsipogtog by state authorities is intended to marginalise the autochthonous Mi'kmaq Nation as a sociopolitical entity within Canada by way of force.

This is genocide.

The destruction of the Indigenous population of North America is not new news to the people of the First Nations. We continue to wage the struggle for Indigenous survival through the persistence of our resistance. The racist, enforced displacement and economic exploitation of modern First Nations Peoples, the unpeaceful dispossession of Indigenous lands and the right to protest colonialism are critical issues for all Original Peoples of the Fourth World facing extinction in the name of European and capitalist expansion.

Respect Indigenous Mi’kmaq Human and Territorial Rights!

We applaud the Mi’kmaq Warrior Society and all Original Peoples of the Fourth World courageously and intelligently resisting colonialism and Indigenous genocide.



- Editors of the Aboriginal News Group.

Friday, October 18, 2013

spider webs and choices




spider webs, political games - so similar. We have Banks resigning his portfolios and going to court and I have to say that I quite like the photos of him in the dock - bad I know. We have the brownsexscandal in Auckland - the spiders have woven difficult webs around the truth of what has happened there and what the end games of the participants are. Labour are surging up the polls and it has been so good to hear Cunliffe lead - he is really shining and doing well and this bodes well for the left and Mana. We had the simon bridges clown act on Campbell's show - and bridges made a fool of himself by defending the indefensible and fully aligning himself with the exploiters who are and will be fracking and drilling as soon as they can - if we let them that is. I'm afraid we are coming to a crossroads where will have to make some hard choices - choices about who we are and what we believe in. We can't let their drilling plans go ahead - it's as simple as that really. We will have to do what people like this are doing, we will have to set up barricades and lay our bodies on the line a bit. We have done it before during the Tour and we can do it again.

Hattips : The Standard

Friday, September 13, 2013

remembering Steve Biko


This is a revised repost from the blog but on this day, 36 years after Steve was murdered, I thought it timely to update and  post again.

One of the most influencial people in my life was a man called Steve Biko. I found this book when I was young and it affected me greatly. Then along came the tour and I carried a handmade sign saying, 'Remember Steve Biko' throughout all the protest marches.

This is a quote from a paragragh of an article Steve Biko wrote in 1970

"Does this mean I am against intergration? If by integration you understand a breakthrough into white society by blacks, an assimilation and acceptance of blacks into an already established set of norms and code of behaviour set up and maintained by whites, then YES I am against it. I am against the superior-inferior white-black stratification that makes the white a perpetual teacher and the black a perpetual pupil (and a poor one at that). I am against the intellectual arrogance of white people that makes them believe that white leadership is a sine qua non in this country and that whites are the divinely appointed pace-setters in progress. I am against the fact that a settler minority should impose an entire system of values on an indigenous people".

That was written in a different time, place and context I agree, but once you get over the fact that we are not black south africans, and allow your mind to slide over the black/white terminology, the message still resonates.

We must do things our way.

What does that mean for Māori? Many still have an inferiority complex. Many still believe that the consumerist, western model is our model. Many think they are right and we are wrong. Colonisation is insidious, it is designed to make people change their values, it erodes a peoples confidence in themselves so that they believe the lies that they cannot do it, or that they don't have the skills or that the pursuit of money is the be all and end all. It's all rubbish.

As more and more people suffer under this government and their exploitative philosophy, more and more people are looking for values and truth that can provide a base to move into the future. We must walk backwards to the future. We must listen to the lessons from our past because that is where the answers for the future lie. The time to reconnect to this land and the heritage we all have is now because that is the best, and imo only, way to safeguard our future, and the future for our children. How do we do it? One step at a time, one sentence at a time, one feeling at a time. Each step is worthwhile and each step is essential - take your step.


Perhaps another quote from Steve Biko

"The blacks are tired of standing at the touchlines to witness a game that they should be playing. They want to do things for themselves and all by themselves."

Letter to SRC Presidents, I Write What I Like, 1978.

Steve Biko died on the floor of a empty Pretoria Central Prison cell on 12 September 1977, aged 30.

Friday, September 6, 2013

small update

A small update - I haven't died and gone to heaven and I'll be back posting soon. I did break my ribs and I have to say it has been painful and a pain plus I'm getting married soon so lots of organising. Kia kaha!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

king's hundred straws

On a regular basis someone has a go at some aspect of Māoridom that they can't get their heads around. Unsurprisingly it is often the same areas that get criticized and pōwhiri is one of the regulars. Many, many pōwhiri have been performed over all of the years yet the meaning and understanding of this is still lost to most. Why is that? Simple - the Government has a responsibility to help all citizens understand and comprehend aspects of Māoridom as guaranteed within The Treaty of Waitangi via equality, but like everything about that agreement, they have not performed their duty and have deliberately not helped their citizens to understand and comprehend even the most basic aspects of their treaty partner. They haven't done it because they have preferred division within society and the othering of Māori. Why? Just makes business easier I suspect

Onto today's example, Labour MP Annette King is not happy , why?

While Youth MPs were sworn into parliament today, Labour’s Annette King showed outrage over a gender segregated Powhiri. 
Labour MP Annette King said she was not comfortable with the “segregated nature” of the welcoming.
“In no way would this have happened during Helen Clark’s day,” she said.
Ms King said she would strive for gender equality for future Powhiri’s so that they could “accurately reflect” the House of Representatives.
“A change is long overdue, in my opinion,” she said.
Pathetic from that long standing member of Parliament and rubbish too - how many pōwhiri have been done whilst she has been in Parliament do you think? Well she got elected in 1984, had a term out of Parliament and came back in in 1993 - so let's be generous and say over 25 years in Parliament and now she is suddenly 'not comfortable' after hundreds of pōwhiri - and just how many pōwhiri during the Helen Clark 9 years in Government, by the same iwi? Still hundreds imo.

The fact that this person is now telling Māori what to do and what is acceptable in cultural activities is disgusting and shows what a waste of space King is. This Member of Parliament had ample opportunity to positively work to support a greater understanding of Māori culture for all people in this land - what did she do? The answer via her own dim comments is nothing - like just about every other colleague she has had on both sides of the house.

Update - this is a comment I put on The Standard regarding the 'gender segregation' in response to pops - it covers a bit of ground.

pops
But it sounds like you’re saying Maori tikanga is dead and static. I always understood it to be adaptive and evolving – you know, a living culture. I don’t know many Maori under the age of 35-40 who would still buy into that gender segregation crap.
me
Of course it is a living culture and continually evolving – you know that and you know I think that. It isn’t gender segregation – bloody hell why does everything have to be filtered through your particular worldview. The debate is there within Māoridom with strong advocates on all sides. Have you actually considered any of those views? Have you considered for instance that, as some argue, the whole debate about who gets to speak is based on a context where male behaviour is used as the norm against which female behaviour is judged. Or how about the idea that within an oral culture there are many ways to speak not just the obvious one and that women speak in many ways throughout pōwhiri and within a Māori cultural context – but oh it doesn’t fit the ‘right’ way to speak which is based upon an imposed western cultural system which is assumed to be the best way. Anyway there are many other angles and points around this other than the knee-jerk – oh look at the gender segregation. A living culture is able, entitled and obligated to evolve within its own parameters and worldview without interference from those who assume a superiority that isn’t deserved or matched with the realities they create in the world they dominate.
 
 

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

dim distraction

Racists are generally not very bright. They hide their dimness sometimes in flowery language like 1law4all and at other times they let it all hang out like the recently launched Pakeha Party. It is funny to watch them and these types don't bother me too much because they are so dim they don't realise how dim they are.

So I'm not worried about The Pakeha Party - much mirth has been made about them using te reo Māori and not being able to spell and  their silly slogans, such as Toby Manhire outlines
“If the Maori get it, we want it to!” Yeah! But want it to what? The missing word, almost certainly, is “thrive”.
Zet covers it well on The Standard where he lists the things this Party can get

http://thestandard.org.nz/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/what-maori-get1.png

The whole Party is a joke and the joke is that they meant party as in party not political party. So as I say it is not worth taking seriously even though they have received more than 34,000 likes on facebook - much more serious is 1law4all because they are actively trying to change our constitution to disadvantage Māori - they want to solidify their racism in the very fabric of our country. Both groups are interrelated and recently I found a nice explanation for their idiocy in an explanation of another idiocy

Rationalwiki
Usage of the term heterophobic or heterophobia by anti-gay groups falls into the wider pattern of the persecution complex, in which groups criticized for their tendency to create hate and discrimination react by reframing their discriminatory tendencies as some value-neutral idea, and then suggesting that criticism of this reframed idea constitutes discrimination.
Thus, racism becomes white pride, and the marginalized racist claims that his “heritage” is being sidelined unjustly through “reverse racism”.
You see the people that are racist feel persecuted and through disjointed logic they reframe their problem and make it someone else's. So don't get worked up about this - just enjoy the laughs and also enjoy the very dim joining up on facebook and then keep working for equality and keep fighting the real dirty racists - those like 1law4all and their moneyed mates - that is where the real battle is.