web analytics

Framing the argument

Written By: - Date published: 12:00 pm, November 18th, 2010 - 15 comments
Categories: capitalism, class war, democratic participation, farming, Mining, workers' rights - Tags:

They say that those who can frame the argument ‘win the argument’.

Connor English the Chief Executive of Federated Farmers is trying to frame the argument in a right wing way that benefits the rich and privileged, to the detriment of working people and the environment.

The Farmers Federation Chief has launched a public attack on environmentalists, the unions and the protest movement generally, resorting to simplistic right wing rhetoric reminiscent of the Tea Party of the US.

Conner English publicly criticised protesters opposed to the unsustainable rape of the environment by mining and agribusiness, combining this, with an attack on those seeking pay justice for teachers, or union rights for actors.

English’s argument boils down to one simple premise:

….those who want decent wages and conditions (for teachers actors and other workers) must trade this off with maximum exploitation of nature and the environment by big business.

Though slyly framed, Connor English’s argument attacking both types of protest reveals that in truth he favours maximum exploitation of both, workers and the environment, and is opposed to any protest that challenges his corporate agenda.

There is no free lunch

watching 4 recent protests in Auckland. The first against just the idea of doing a stock take on the minerals that we have. Secondly the idea that a movie might be made in New Zealand on different terms than in some other countries. Thirdly marching for more pay for teachers, and finally, against New Zealand produced food.

if you are marching for “more pay from government” then you should not also be marching against investigating our mineral potential, our creative film sector or indeed our food sector.

The claim is that there is not enough wealth (money) to go round unless big agri-business or mining companies are free to exploit human and natural resources to their limits, (and beyond them), is an emotive and simplistic framing of the argument that leaves out such embarrassing facts as the extreme inequality in the sharing out of the wealth of this country.

As the Greens like to say: “there is enough for our need but not for our greed”.

Connor English is a well paid advocate for those whose personal greed comes above all else.

Connor English in his diatribe mentions the debt crisis, but nowhere does he mention the excessive profit taking by the banks and finance companies that has made getting a house on an average wage an impossibility without going into risky debt.

Connor English in his attack on those seeking fairer wages or protection for the environment accuses them of seeking a free lunch.

But if you are the manager of Telecom, or you are a rich investor in South Canturbury Finance, or the head of big film production company, or the overpaid president of the Feds. you are enjoying a ‘Free Lunch’ at the expense of the rest of us.

Connor English in his attack on the left wants such privileged people to be able to continue to enjoy their free lunch indefinitely, no matter how much damage to society or the natural environment their continuing ‘Free Lunch’ leaves in it’s wake.

Maybe I should thank Connor English for opening up this debate so that a lot more people are moved to counter this simplistically slanted rubbish.

Jenny


History

15 comments on “Framing the argument”

  1. joe bloggs 1

    .

    there is no free lunch

    I can see how that would grate with the cloth cap, cardy-wearing Left.

    • NickS 1.1

      And unsurprisingly you’re missing the fairly obvious point that such a framing as used by Conner ignores the costs of strip mining otherwise renewable resources in the name of “progress”, making it somewhat hypocritical. As returning ecological resources back to prior productivity is a hell of a lot more expensive than maintaining it in the long term, as ecologies aren’t nice wee linear systems. Then there’s the costs they foster onto society like polluted rivers, algal blooms and in the case of Canterbury, polluted aquifers, dust storms from totally dry river beds and a loss of recreational activities such as swimming, fishing and jet boating.

      But hey, it’s awwwwwright as long as we get rich in the short term, despite ignoring all the future bills.

    • bbfloyd 1.2

      joe…you wear your bigotry well… been practicing a while by the look…

  2. I’m sure he’s had a lot more free lunches during his time than the average person – even if you restrict that to the literal sense – hypocrite

  3. HitchensFan 3

    Well his brother continues to have a free lunch for his entire family

  4. Craig Glen Eden 4

    “No Free Lunch” No unless your brothers name is Bill in which case its free accommodation free cleaner. Im sick of these Tory hypocrites. Most of Conner English’s type have not done a hard days work for years.

    Lets see Conner get off his arse and start a business from scratch , working 16 hour days beholden to a bank and trying to pay school fees, feed and provide for his missus and kids.

    As soon as I hear that term theirs no such thing as a free lunch I know the person who makes it is eating corporate lunches, guaranteed..

    People who work or run their own business one don’t often get to stop for lunch and two when they do, what ever they eat will be something they bought with them from home.

    While I know violence is not the answer but I would love to do a few celebrity bouts with some of these pricks. Not that I am a celebrity just I would love to punch the shit out of them for a good cause or two. Yes I know “oh that’s fighting talk” but I feel better just getting it out!

    • Pascal's bookie 4.1

      No free lunch:

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10688316

      New Zealand farmers are unlikely to be brought into the emissions trading scheme in 2015 unless scientific advances are made in reducing animal emissions and our trading partners make giant strides in putting a price on carbon, the Government says.

      Speaking at the Federated Farmers National Council yesterday, Climate Change Minister Nick Smith noted the Government had already said it would not proceed with the inclusion of agriculture and other sectors until it sees comparable progress from other countries.

      The entry of the agricultural sector into the emissions trading scheme (ETS) has been delayed once – from 2013 to 2015 – and the Government has also increased measures to shield the sector from the full impact of the scheme once it does enter

    • joe bloggs 4.2

      Nah it’s not fighting talk, you old sook, it’s just good old-fashioned grass-is-greener-on-the-other-side jealosy

      • Craig Glen Eden 4.2.1

        Come hear and say that joe bloggs. ha ha.
        Jealous of what?
        No not jealous just sick of Tory Hypocrisy. These people who suck of others are all to ready to preach about self responsibility but as soon as they can they are into anything and every thing they can get. English, Bennett, Grosser,Hide, bla bla. It wouldn’t be so bad if they just did their bloody jobs, but no they have to preach at us and all the while keep taking from us.

        I feel a chant coming on “enuff is enuff stop taking our stuff”

      • bbfloyd 4.2.2

        “it’s just good old fashioned jealousy”,says the man as he walks away with the family silver toward his bentley..

  5. Lez Howard 5

    Connor is Nelsons Breed One Eye One arm One Arshole

  6. vto 6

    Take a snap-shot of the NZ environment in 1850.

    Take a snap-shot of the NZ environment in 1900.

    Take a snap-shot of the NZ environment in 1950.

    Take a snap-shot of the NZ environment in 2000.
    (and maybe take one more of Canterbury waterways in 2010 for good measure).

    And what do we see? A constant degradation in the environment. Which leads to …

    The quite obvious conclusion that extrapolated out to 2050 the environment will be in such a poor state that farming itself may even collapse. Certainly there will be no rivers to swim in, all drinking water will require removal of shit and inclusion of chemicals, there will be no bees, there will be no wide range of flora and fauna, there will be increased soil loss, etc etc.

    The farmers are doing NOTHING to stop this slide. And it is not even their environment – they are shitting in an environment that is not their own.

    I am disgusted in farmers, as represented by the likes of English and Nicholson (an even bigger dipshit).

  7. vto 7

    I’ve got it! Connor English was in fact referring to the BIGGEST free lunch currently on offer in New Zealand – the free lunch that is the environmental slice that the farmers take for nothing to support their own lifestyle.

    Farmers take of the environment is NZ’s biggest free lunch. Name one bigger Connor.

    You want to frame the argument? Well then, perfect framing Connor – you just allowed the description of the biggest free lunch going.

    • Bored 7.1

      Thank you VTO, somebody had to say it. It really pisses me off, in the last 30 years we have witnessed the collapse of the lowland trout fisheries almost entirely due to the farming sectors increasing innappropriate land usage and industrial farming practices. As the trout go, so have the other species of flora and fauna in these systems. It is a disgrace. Federated Farmers as a single body are to my mind the ecological equivalent of concentration camp guards.

      On the up side there are a number of success stories out there with individuals and groups of farmers who have done somethng about the impact of farming on the environment. These farmers give me faith that their is an alternative vision and methodology to the intellectually challenged myopia proposed by English. As you say he is the biggest taker of a free lunch, he ranks in my mind with bank robbers and banking executives for larcenous intent.

  8. Bored 8

    As an alternative vision to the English rip shit and bust how about this:
    * restoration of wetlands to be paid for with a levy from all water extraction users (urban and rural) as a key policy toward ensuring a constant and clean water supply for farmers and city dwellers.
    * long term tradeable government bonds backed by hardwood timber planting on marginal land and farmland rented for the purpose to provide local (as opposed to imported supply of hardwoods) whilst providing erosion control.
    * fencing off of riparian edges from all stock to allow riparian systems to act as a filter to agricultural run off as an unemployment relief package.
    * substantial government subsidy to farmers to begin non industrial sustainable practices for the retention of soil moisture and fertility.
    * redirection of Massey and Lincoln toward leadership in education of agricultural sustainability, backed by non market based emphasis and investment in government funded agricultural research.

    Dont think English will go for it as it does not involve ripping the shit out of our future….

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts


History

  • Cool heads needed on online learning plans
    The National government is ploughing ahead with a plan to legislate for the introduction of online schools against official advice and despite being presented with research that shows online schooling models overseas have weaker results than their traditional counterparts, Labour’s ...
    19 hours ago
  • Worst September road toll in years
    The deadliest September on our roads since 2009 has meant tragedy for the family and friends of 25 people killed this month 17 more deaths than at the same time last year, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Sue Moroney. “We are ...
    19 hours ago
  • Crime states paint a dismal picture
    The crime statistics released today paint a picture of crime on the increase as Judith Collin’s promise of more front line cops fails to materialise, says Labour’s Police spokesman Stuart Nash “There were over 9500 more burglaries, almost 4,000 more ...
    2 days ago
  • Nick Smith must urgently intervene to avoid housing delays
    National must urgently legislate to make the unitary plan operable while allowing a high court challenge against to make its way through the legal process, Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Auckland desperately needs this plan right away to ...
    3 days ago
  • Kiwis drowning in debt in out of control housing market
    New statistics reveal Kiwis are taking on record levels of debt in order to get into the housing market, as prices continue to outstrip incomes, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Stats NZ has today revealed real estate loans ...
    3 days ago
  • Planning reform report a turning point?
     A joint report from business and environmentalists on the Resource Management laws could be a turning point for both planning and environmental protection, says Labour’s Environment spokesperson David Parker.  “The four organisations, the Environmental Defence Society, the Property Council, the ...
    3 days ago
  • Privatisation and deregulation not the solution
    Deregulation, privatisation, and shifting more of the cost onto students isn’t the way to address inequality, lack of innovation and declining participation in tertiary education, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. ...
    3 days ago
  • Homeownership out of reach for middle income Aucklanders
    New figures show that even middle income Aucklanders are finding themselves unable to afford to buy a first home as National’s housing crisis rolls on, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “New data released by interest.co.nz shows that the lower ...
    4 days ago
  • More toilet cleaners or more tradespeople?
    The Government is not doing enough to help the construction and trades sector meet its workforce demand, instead steering students towards cleaning toilets, says Labour’s Skills and Training spokesperson Jenny Salesa. ...
    4 days ago
  • More cracks appear in health funding
    News that the Waikato District Health Board could lose $2.7 million from its budget because it failed to make an elective target is downright disturbing, says Labour’s Acting Health spokesperson Dr David Clark.  “This is a DHB that has tried ...
    4 days ago
  • Student debt cracks the billion mark
    New figures showing that student loan defaulters have now clocked over $1 billion in debt highlights National's failure to combat spiralling student loan debt, Labour's Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. "Threatening to arrest returning student loan borrowers at the ...
    5 days ago
  • Foreign Students just a commodity to National
    National MP Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi has confirmed that his party sees international students as nothing more than a commodity, says Labour's Immigration spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. "Mr Bakshi’s appalling comparison of some students to 'faulty fridges' that should be returned to ...
    6 days ago
  • Tolley’s spin on Education spend doesn’t add up
    National’s spin about school funding won’t wash with parents who are paying more and more of the cost of their kids’ education every year, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.  “All the spin in the world can’t hide the fact ...
    6 days ago
  • National not facing up to export challenge
    “The latest export data from Statistics New Zealand paints a picture of an economy which is not paying its way in the world, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Exports fell 9% - led by milk powder exports falling to ...
    6 days ago
  • Correction over Talley’s statement
    Labour’s Workplace Relations spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway has been advised by AFFCO Ltd that AFFCO is not advertising for staff in the Manawatu through MSD as stated in a press statement released earlier today.  “I have been advised by AFFCO that ...
    1 week ago
  • Minister, cut your losses – withdraw this doomed Bill
    Local Government Minister Sam Lotu-Iiga’s request for a five month extension on the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2) is an admission that the Bill is fundamentally flawed, says Labour’s Local Government Spokesperson ...
    1 week ago
  • Coleman’s cuts create crisis
    Mental health services in New Zealand are in a state of crisis with Youthline saying that calls for extreme depression doubled last year, says Labour’s Associate Health spokesperson Dr David Clark.  “About 150 young Kiwis are missing out on help ...
    1 week ago
  • Government helping Talley’s to break workers
    The Ministry for Social Development appears to be assisting Talley’s-Affco replace experienced workers effectively locked out by the company, say Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni and Workplace Relations spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “MSD is advertising for meat processing workers for ...
    1 week ago
  • Electives lag due to $1.7 billion hole
    The lag in hip and knee replacements is a direct consequence of the Government’s $1.7 billion underfunding of health, says Labour’s Associate Health spokesperson Dr David Clark.  “A comprehensive study by the University of Otago says that the rate of ...
    1 week ago
  • Speech to Master Builders’ Constructive conference
    Today’s all about being Constructive. And that is good because I believe there is a hunger out there for positive solutions. We must be able to believe there can be a better future. ...
    1 week ago
  • Māori Party housing plan complete failure
    The Māori Party’s housing plan to put more Māori into more homes has been a complete failure with fewer than five loans granted per year, says Labour’s Maori Development spokesperson Kelvin Davis. ...
    1 week ago
  • Fund IRD better to go after tax avoiders
    National’s Tax Working Group used the following graph (p30) in 2010 as part of their justification to cut the top tax rate. The big peaks around the top tax threshold were evidence of a suspiciously high number of taxpayers ...
    GreensBy robert.ashe
    1 week ago
  • Pasifika youth ignored by the Government
    The Adolescent Health Research Group’s new report on the wellbeing of young Pacific people shines a spotlight on the Government’s failure  to deliver any “brighter future” for them, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “Their research shows ...
    1 week ago
  • Police in the provinces are dissatisfied
    Police in the cities of Gisborne, Napier and Hastings are a lot more unhappy than their big city cousins says Labour’s Police Spokesman Stuart Nash.     “In fact the top four districts for enjoyable work within NZ Police are ...
    1 week ago
  • Govt action needed after Wheeler holds
    The Reserve Bank Governor’s warning that “excessive house price inflation” is posing a risk to financial stability puts the pressure back on the Government to take action to address the housing crisis, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Graeme Wheeler’s ...
    1 week ago
  • Minister confirms – new ministry only about abuse
    ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Silver Ferns Farms decision a tragedy
    The rubber stamping by the Overseas Investment Office of the Shanghai Maling buyout of Silver Fern Farms is a sorry day for the once proud New Zealand meat sector, says Labour’s spokesperson for Primary Industries, Damien O’Connor.  “Generations of Kiwis ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Benching Nick Smith first step to Kermadec solution
    Side-lining Nick Smith must be the first step in sorting out the Government's Kermadec debacle, says Labour's Fisheries Spokesperson Rino Tirikatene. “Last week Labour called for Nick Smith to be removed from further negotiations with Te Ohu Kaimoana over the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Parents, schools, teachers oppose bulk funding
    Overwhelming opposition to the National Government’s school bulk funding proposal is unsurprising and Hekia Parata should now unequivocally rule out proceeding with the idea, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Bulk funding could only lead to bigger class sizes or ...
    2 weeks ago
  • MBIE gives up on enforcing the law
      The Government must provide labour inspectors with the resources they need to enforce basic employment law after reports that MBIE is only prosecuting the worst cases, says Labour’s Workplace Relations and Safety spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway.  “Today’s news that MBIE ...
    2 weeks ago
  • West Coast population declines amid bleak economic forecast
    Despite the country experiencing record population growth, the number of people living in the West Coast fell, highlighting struggles in the region from low commodity prices and a poor economic forecast, says Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson David Clark. “The latest ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Recovery roadblocks cause for concern
    Strong pressure on mental health services, a flagging local economy and widespread issues with dodgy earthquake repairs are all causes for concern for people in Canterbury according to a new survey, says Labour’s Canterbury spokesperson Megan Woods. “Today the CDHB’s ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Motel purchase must not kick people onto the street
    The Government’s purchase of a South Auckland motel to house the homeless must come with a promise that the current long term tenants will not be kicked out onto the streets, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “It is bizarre ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not everyone singing along to so-called rock star economy
    The Westpac McDermott Miller Confidence Survey shows there is serious unease about the economy’s ability to deliver benefits to many New Zealanders, despite the Government trumpeting headline figures, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “According to this survey a significantly ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Youth no better off under National’s “guarantee”
    John Key’s Youth Guarantee is such a spectacular failure that those who undertake the programme are more likely to end up on a benefit and less likely to end up in full-time employment than those who don’t, Leader of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • More low-skilled students becoming residents
    New figures showing international students now make up nearly 40 per cent of all principal applicants approved for New Zealand residency and that their skill level has fallen dramatically, are further evidence that National’s immigration system is broken, says Labour’s ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 35% of offshore speculators paying no tax
    Offshore investors are aggressively exploiting tax breaks to pay no tax on their rental properties according to IRD data released by Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “35% of offshore investors are paying no tax on their properties, and are pocketing ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Friday fish dump stinks
    This government has dumped bad news on a Friday to try to avoid political scrutiny in Parliament, says Labour’s Environment spokesperson David Parker. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • OECD report card: National must try harder
    The OECD report on education shows there’s much more to be done for young Kiwis, Labour’s education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Kermadec stoush shows Maori Party double-standards
    The Māori Party’s reaction to the trampled Treaty rights and the Government’s lack of consultation on the Kermadec Ocean Sanctuary reeks of the same arrogant mismanagement of the unpopular Maori land reforms, Ikaroa-Rāwhiti MP Meka Whaitiri says. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Flawed fish dumping calls
    The finding that MPI failed to properly enforce the law even when it had evidence of fish dumping seriously damages the trust and credibility of the Ministry, the industry and this Government, Labour's Fisheries Spokesperson Rino Tirikatene says. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Sidestepping Smith should be side-lined
    Nick Smith's arrogance and disrespect towards Māori is putting the future of the Kermadec Ocean Sanctuary at risk and he needs to excuse himself from further negotiations with Te Ohu Kaimoana, Labour's Fisheries spokesperson Rino Tirikatene says. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government must respond to cash for jobs scam
    Urgent Government action is required to halt  the emerging cash-for-jobs immigration scandal that is taking hold in New Zealand says Labour’s Immigration Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway.  “Stories of rogue immigration agents scamming thousands of dollars from migrant workers are just further ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government dragging its feet on surgical mesh
    Jonathan Coleman is dragging his feet over any action to protect New Zealanders from more disasters with surgical mesh, says Health Spokesperson Annette King.  “The Government’s pathetic response is to claim all will be fixed by a new regime to ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s baby number app goes gangbusters
    An interactive tool that celebrates Labour’s achievements in health over the decades has become an online hit, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “Since the tool was launched last night, 18 thousand people have used it to find their baby ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Real disposable income falls in last three months
    Kiwis are working harder than ever but real disposable income per person fell in the last quarter thanks to record population increases, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson said. ‘In Budget 2016 the National Government said that what mattered most for ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Baby number app celebrates Labour achievements
    Labour has launched an interactive tool that allows New Zealanders to take a look back at our achievements in health over the decades, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “Today is the 78th anniversary of the Social Security Act 1938, ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Legal experts unpick Māori land reforms
    One of New Zealand’s top law firms has joined the chorus of legal experts heavily critical of the controversial Te Ture Whenua Maori Bill, adding more weight to the evidence that the reforms fall well beneath the robust legal standards ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Industries most reliant on immigration worst offenders
    The industries most reliant on immigration are the worst offenders when it comes to meeting their most basic employment obligations, says Labour’s Immigration spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway.  “The industries that are most reliant on immigration are Hospitality, Administration, Agriculture, Forestry and ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Time to remove law that discriminates against sole parents
    It’s time to repeal a harmful law that sanctions those who do not name the other parent of their child, Labour’s Social Development Spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni says. “Every week, 17,000 children are missing out because their sole parent is being ...
    3 weeks ago


History


History


History