Written By: - Date published: 11:47 am, November 20th, 2012 - 57 comments
Categories: business, capitalism, copyright, film, internet, john key, tourism, trade, Unions, workers' rights - Tags: recep, tpp
It looks like while many of us on the Left are focused on a struggle for the political direction of NZ, John Key is steaming ahead in selling NZ. Today he is acting as wing-man to Obama, to ensure the success of the TPP in the Asia-Pacific region. Meanwhile, the impact of the “Hobbit Law” (selling NZ workers to Warners) is taking a heavy toll on many NZ actors. And it seems the tax payer-supported Hobbit production has also been taking a toll on animals.
Prime Minister John Key will team up with United States President Barack Obama in Cambodia on Tuesday morning in a push to seal a major trade deal with Asian leaders. …
The meeting, … – will see Mr Obama launch discussions with the United States’ vision for the deal, with intellectual property regulation a major sticking point.
The main problem with TPP is that it enables multinational (largely US-based) corporates to over-ride NZ laws and interests for their own profits. This includes intellectual property laws, which, in the TPP, has strong links to the Hollywood, media and communications industries. I’ve posted before about Key’s efforts to sell NZ to Hollywood, in a deal to give US interests control over promoting tourism in NZ (here and here).
“The entertainment industry is the principal driver of US demands for radical new intellectual property protections in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, currently under negotiation,” Jane Kelsey said. …
Hollywood is driving the US push for unprecedented extensions to intellectual property rights, carrying with them the further criminalization for breaches and massive cost increases for everyday Internet users. It also wants a ban on parallel imports.
In my post recapping the Hollywood dispute, I argued that,
Both the government and Jackson manipulated the dispute and its coverage in the MSM to their advantage.
Key and Jackson did this by undermining the actors’ union’s campaign for better pay and conditions working on international productions. I quoted Nigel Haworth (2011) who said
Thus, analytically, the New Zealand state simultaneously conceded, financially and legislatively, to the global film sector whilst taking the opportunity to further its ER liberalisation and attack the domestic trade union movement.
Today Tom Hunt and Paul Easton report how NZ actor’s have been suffering as a result of the “Hobbit Law”; a law that was pushed through parliament to please Warner Brothers.
Since the infamous actors’ dispute over terms and conditions on The Hobbit, some Kiwi actors have had to endure on-set conditions that include sharing coloured prop contact lenses, their union says.
Phil Darkins, of Actors’ Equity, told a conference in Wellington yesterday he had also heard of actors being verbally abused, denied shelter, and not being offered blankets or warm drinks after long shoots in the water.
Those who spoke out would not get further work, he said.
Also today, PETA claims animals have been harshly treated in the making of The Hobbit. A claim Sir Peter Jackson rejects.
So, remember, John Key has not stopped in his endless drive to sell NZ to overseas governments and big business interests. It’s not only that Key is being Obama’s wing-man in negotiating the TPP in the Asia Pacific region. His government is juggling the TPP with an Asean based trade agreement-in-the-making: the RECP, as I posted about here.