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Emeritus Professor Jane Kelsey Valedictory Lecture

Written By: - Date published: 10:36 am, July 29th, 2022 - 12 comments
Categories: activism - Tags: ,

From Wikipedia,

Elizabeth Jane Kelsey is a professor of law at the University of Auckland and a prominent critic of globalisation.

Jane Kelsey has a LLB (Hons) from Victoria University of Wellington, BCL from Oxford University, MPhil from the University of Cambridge. In 1991 she completed a PhD from the University of Auckland, titled Rogernomics and the Treaty of Waitangi: the contradiction between the economic and Treaty policies of the fourth Labour government, 1984-1990, and the role of law in mediating that contradiction in the interests of the colonial capitalist state.[1] She has worked at the University of Auckland since 1979 and was appointed to a personal Chair in Law in 1997.

She is a key member of the Action Resource Education Network of Aotearoa (Arena), and is actively involved in researching and speaking out against the World Trade Organization, the International Monetary Fund, free trade and corporate-led globalisation.[2] She is also actively involved in campaigning for the New Zealand Government‘s full recognition of the Treaty of Waitangi and opposed the controversial seabed and foreshore legislation.

Kelsey is an outspoken critic of the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade talks, of which New Zealand is a part.[3]

Kelsey took part in demonstrations over the 1981 Springbok tour.

In 2020, Kelsey won the Global category of the New Zealand Women of Influence Awards.[4]

Video starts with introductions. Main lecture starts at 27mins

12 comments on “Emeritus Professor Jane Kelsey Valedictory Lecture ”

  1. Ad 1

    "The New Zealand Experiment" is still excellent reading and makes so much sense of where we are 25 years after publication.

  2. swordfish 2

    .

    Generally sound critique of neo-liberalism … but otherwise bordering on the horrendous.

    Exemplifies the fake moral posturing & radical chic of affluent Upper-Middle Wokedom … imagining themselves heroic subversives … dripping with the narcissism & hubris of the privileged self-righteous … utterly clueless that they & their allies now comprise the new cultural & political Status Quo, a profoundly censorious & anti-democratic Elite … hence silent about who their chosen victims & scapegoats are & therefore disingenuous in what speaking truth to power now actually involves … the implementation of her crude by-rote dogma – divorced from any understanding of the complexities of reality – guaranteed to create significant new forms of social injustice.

    And, of course, it won’t be those who’ve enjoyed a Professor’s salary for the past few decades who’ll be doing any of the suffering & sacrifice.

    • Robert Guyton 2.1

      Is that grudging admiration we sense, oozing from your comment, swordfish?

    • hetzer 2.2

      Couldnt have said it better Swordfish, [deleted], hopefully shes off the taxpayers tit now, but i wouldnt bet on it

      [read the Policy if you want to keep commenting here. We expect some kind of political point to be made. Ad homs and lazy slurs aren’t that – weka]

    • RedLogix 2.3

      And, of course, it won’t be those who’ve enjoyed a Professor’s salary for the past few decades who’ll be doing any of the suffering & sacrifice.

      Indeed those advocating deconstructing everything never seem to get around to demand the dismantling their safe tenured professorial positions of privilege.

      • Drowsy M. Kram 2.3.1

        RL, are you implying that the pesky Prof is "advocating deconstructing everything", and, if so, might you be applying hyperbolic spin to Kelsey's 'woke' scholarship simply because it doesn't align with your own interests and world view?

        Measuring and monitoring growing inequality
        A range of work has reviewed the major determinants of these changes and it is not the intention here to repeat those discussions (Kelsey, 1993; O’Brien and Wilkes, 1993; Sharp, 1994; The Economist, 1994; Kelsey, 1995; Kelsey and O’Brien, 1995; Boston et al, 1999a; Jesson, 1999; New Zealand Council of Trade Unions, 1999; Blaiklock et al, 2002). In brief, rapidly increasing unemployment in the 1980s and 1990s, low wages arising from changes to industrial legislation, changes in housing policy, cuts in taxation for higher-income earners, the introduction of various forms of user pays for public services and the 1991 benefit cuts combined to alter the pattern of income distribution significantly and in the process of doing so significantly increased income inequalities. Indeed, the extent of the changes in inequality led commentators to the conclusion that inequality had widened further in New Zealand than in any other Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) country in the 1980s and 1990s, with the exception of the UK (Hills, 1995). That pattern of growing inequality has continued, with The Social Report noting that it has continued to increase since 2001 (Ministry of Social Development, 2006c).

        If your kete is full, then there's no decent reason to be 'sharing hesitant', imho.

        Why poverty in New Zealand is everyone's concern
        Liang describes poverty as a "heritable condition" that perpetuates and amplifies through generations: "It is also not hard to see how individual poverty flows into communities and society, with downstream effects on economics, crime and health, as well as many other systems. Loosen one strand and everything else unravels."

        A Kete Half Empty
        Poverty is your problem, it is everyone's problem, not just those who are in poverty. – Rebecca, a child from Te Puru

        Kelsey, Liang et al. – what is it with all these uppity educated 'woke' women?

        Children in poverty worry because they see the awful choices their parents are having to make [13 March 2022]
        And to see a child’s face when they’re handed a hot lunch, or a brand-new pair of shoes, or a warm jacket, no questions asked, I can assure you that look of joy never gets old.
        http://www.kidscan.org.nz

        • RedLogix 2.3.1.1

          As far as Kelsey is concerned swordfish nails it:

          Generally sound critique of neo-liberalism … but otherwise bordering on the horrendous.

          And even her opposition to free trade, while it was rightly based on the Captain Obvious point that the benefits of globalisation were very uneven – China for instance being able to make huge progress but at a direct cost to working people in the developed world – nonetheless I would be interested to understand Kelsey's alternative model to open and free trade.

          Or was she like so many academics – really good at telling us why the system should be torn down, but NFC about what should replace it?

          But just in case you were confused, my comment above said nothing directly about Kelsey – it was aimed at the woke activist academia in general.

          • Drowsy M. Kram 2.3.1.1.1

            But just in case you were confused, my comment above said nothing directly about Kelsey

            Thanks for that clarification RL. I hope that you can understand the source of my confusion, when you typed this:

            Indeed those advocating deconstructing everything never seem to get around to demand the dismantling their safe tenured professorial positions of privilege.

            in reponse to swordfish's critique ["bordering on the horrendous"] of Kelsey @2.

            Do you ever wonder just what motivates these uppity educated 'woke' women – "NFC" indeed.

  3. Stuart Munro 3

    It's significant to me that little or no effort was made by either of the two major parties to address Kelsey's critiques of trade deals. This reflects the towering arrogance and irresponsibility with which the public power lent to parliamentarians is habitually exercised.

    Trade deals seem to be, like more recent no-debate issues, self-evident truths that cannot be questioned.

    If we consider instances like the free trade deal with China, which is lucrative for the dairy sector, it comes at a cost to domestic manufacturing jobs which never seems to be quantified, and, given the dairy sector's enthusiasm for tax avoidance, avoidance of environmental responsibilities, and reluctance to hire NZ workers or pay them adequately, the raw GDP benefits may translate into rather less than expected in real terms.

    A traditional Labour party would have had reservations about such deals, and would have been at pains to secure and defend workers interests. Kelsey was obliged to step into the gap left by Labour's abandonment of its constituents, and her work on the TPPA saw a vastly improved though still quite marginal deal entertained by Labour, compared to the downright careless agreement National was prepared to sign.

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