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Garner’s TPP rant rejected by the silent majority

Written By: - Date published: 10:15 am, February 2nd, 2016 - 81 comments
Categories: capitalism, democracy under attack, trade - Tags: , , , ,

Duncan Garner does good work sometimes, but he is also capable of pure bollocks. Yesterday’s ill informed rant pushing the TPP was a shocker. (Garner spent the rest of the day re-tweeting anyone who said something nice about it – ouch.)

TPP or die – why we need it

“TPP or die”? Really?

The political consensus on free trade is over.

No it isn’t. Labour has consistently said that they support free trade. In the case of the TPP they reject all the fishooks that come with it. It’s like claiming that someone rejects food because they refuse to eat a poisoned apple.

After decades of supporting free-trade Labour has chosen to veer left into the bosom of NZ First and the Greens and oppose the TPP. It’s short-sighted and totally hypocritical in my view. It looks like the party has had its strings pulled by anti-TPP academic Jane Kelsey.

And we’re in to the kind of scaremongering that tells you much more about the attacker than the attacked. And so on and so on I’ll spare you the rest.

Garner owes it to his readers (and his country) to be informed about both sides of the TPP debate before running off at the keyboard like this. Please Mr Garner, go read these resources at TPP Legal:

Expert Paper #1: Treaty Making, Parliamentary Democracy, Regulatory Sovereignty & The Rule of Law
Expert Paper #2: Chapter 9 on Investment
Expert Paper #3: Māori Rights, Te Tiriti O Waitangi and the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement
Expert Paper #4: The Environment Under TPPA Governance
Expert Paper #5: The Economics of the TPPA

Or if that seems like too much hard work, why not listen to your readers? (Poll below.)

The truth is Labour has taken a massive risk opposing the TPP. I sense the silent majority understands we have to be part of it, despite the noise from the usual suspects.

Maybe you don’t understand the silent majority as well as you think you do.


81 comments on “Garner’s TPP rant rejected by the silent majority”

  1. Brendon Harre -Left wing Liberal 1

    Garner is in danger of becoming another victim of uncertain careers due to technology. Smart phones, computers and the internet are destroying traditional MSM. I don’t know if he has any tertiary education but he might need Labour’s Future of Work retraining assistance the way he is going. TV3 viewership is falling off a cliff. If Garner keeps giving this sort of rubbish journalism then people have a choice and are not afraid of using it.

    • Tc 1.1

      Its not journalism its shilling for the govt like the rest of mediawonks do.

      Technology is not an issue if you provide intelligent, insightful independant content that attracts an audience.

      This is where dunc, paddy, pauley etc fail spectacularly as they shill their butts off for a salary having ditched any pretense at being even handed long ago.

  2. ianmac 2

    I marched with the Blenheim anti-TPP on Saturday.
    However having just read Brian Easton’s piece on Pundit, I am not so certain that we shouldn’t sign it. The total downside to not being in could be a disaster. Maybe that is what Helen was getting at?

    Brian:“That puts us in an extremely invidious position over the TPPA. Sure, we could turn it down, losing both its benefits and its downsides. Were we to do so, however, we would compromise the trust our international activity depends upon, especially the possibility of other trade deals which would open up markets currently restricting our exports.”

    • Lanthanide 2.1

      We also shouldn’t underestimate the fact that the TPPA gets us the “foot in the door” with both US and Japan, two countries we’ve been trying to get trade agreements with for decades.

      If we back out of the TPPA, are they likely to sign up for another agreement with us?

      Once our foot is in the door with the TPPA, will we be able to use that as a basis for further negotiations, either enhancements to the TPPA itself or additional trade agreements?

      • mpledger 2.1.1

        We have little leverage – the leverage is all with the big players and they are going to screw us over in any post-deal negotiations.

        • Colonial Viper

          The US is using the TPP to economically isolate the rising Pacific powers of China and Russia.

          NZ needs to decide if it wants to be a party to that imperial strategy.

          • Bob

            “The US is using the TPP to economically isolate the rising Pacific powers of China and Russia”
            NZ already has a free trade agreement with China, so the TPP would allow us to position NZ as the trade gateway between the US and China

            • Colonial Viper

              What is a “trade gateway”?

              Why would goods from China or the US take an unnecessary detour this far south as part of their journey?

              • Bob

                If the imposed tariffs exceeded the cost of shipping then yes.

                • Colonial Viper

                  What tarriffs are you thinking of?

                  The US and China already have US$0.6T in bilateral trade, they sorted out most of their tarriff issues in the 80’s and 90’s.

                  Further a business model based on trying to dodge tariffs seems to be pretty limited.

                • Duncan

                  You need to get with the country of origin clauses Bob. They expressly state you cannot do this.

          • pete

            China are Russia are probably the only remaining imperialist regimes left. Both are empires, pure and simple.

      • lprent 2.1.2

        The problem with the TPPA is that it is full of costs. The few benefits (very few) fall on a small select group of beneficiaries in agriculture. The costs all fall on the urban population of NZ.

        Sure you could argue that the benefits trickle down, but so far that hasn’t happened, and looks very unlikely to happen to the population affected by the costs.

        For some strange reason this is not perceived to be a fair deal for kiwis.

        The commenters like Garner, Jacobi, Easton, and even you are essentially arguing the rapists mantra. When being raped, we should lie back and enjoy the experience because otherwise we might not enjoy the benefits of being raped again.

        Since our tech, manufacturing, and even tourism export industries, who employ the majority of our population, already get pretty much unlimited access to those markets – why should we care that a small minority get more access to certain markets?

        • Lanthanide

          I’m not arguing in favour of it, just pointing out it’s something to take into consideration.

      • Draco T Bastard 2.1.3

        If we back out of the TPPA, are they likely to sign up for another agreement with us?

        Who gives a fuck?

        I’d rather stick to principles and look after NZers than throw out the principles to sell out NZers via a bad deal.

      • FOMO is a bad philosophy in your personal life and a bad philosophy for international relations. We shouldn’t sign a bad deal just because we’re afraid of being left out of a deal.

    • Nic the NZer 2.2

      Whats the big deal about exporting anyway? It just means people working here for foreigners to enjoy the benefits. NZ needs domestic demand and will never get there by running an export growth strategy.

      • Puckish Rogue 2.2.1

        We are far to small to be able to ignore exporting. I know it, David shearer knows, Phil Goff knows it, Helen Clark knows it, Mike Moore knows it

        • weka

          If all you illustrious people know it, perhaps you could explain why.

          One of our biggest earners isn’t export earnings.

          • TepidSupport

            Tourism is our current biggest export earner but aren’t the biggest visitors from our most lucrative trading partners?
            UK, USA and Aust have always been big but as our presence has grown in Asian markets, so to have visitors from those markets… Could this be a link that would increase with more/ better exposure to markets through TPPA?

        • Draco T Bastard

          We are far to small to be able to ignore exporting.

          Delusional bollocks.

          If we stopped over investing in a few areas to export more we’d then have enough productivity available to cover all areas adequately for the local market.

        • Nic the NZer

          Thats clearly bollocks. As a small country NZ doesn’t need to exert much effort for its export capacity to be used up. Larger countries need to exert much more effort to keep their export capacity utilised.

        • Tautuhi

          Not against free trade, just don’t like the fish hooks in the ISDS Clauses?

      • The Chairman 2.2.2

        “Whats the big deal about exporting anyway?”

        Due to our debt based money supply, nations are required to export to maintain and grow their wealth.

        • Nic the NZer

          That is quite clearly incorrect.

          • The Chairman

            No, I’m afraid it’s not.

            Money is largely borrowed into existence, thus export revenue is required to pay the interest incurred. Keep in mind, only the principal enters our economy, therefore, to repay the interest, revenue must be sourced offshore.

            Here is a little something further to ponder:

            • Nic the NZer

              I am more than well aware how banking functions.

              There are some major issues with what you suggest the implications of that are,
              1) The world as a whole doesn’t export anywhere, and net exports sum to zero across countries. If there is insufficient to repay the interest, then how does the whole world pay the interest on its mostly debt based money supply?
              2) NZ pays the interest in NZ$ on its mostly NZ$ based debts, so how does it get those payments from overseas then anyway by exporting? Of course pretty much the only institutions which can create NZ$ payments are in New Zealand.

              So, no this is not a reason we need to export.

              • The Chairman

                To answer your first question, countries default or surrender assets. Some get away with running deficits.

                As for your second question, export revenue exchanges into NZ dollars when entering our economy, growing our money supply (without interest incurred) thus giving us the fiscal scope to cover our interest burden.

                Therefore, this is one of the main reason all nations strive to grow their exports. It’s a necessity under the current global monetary system.

                • Nic the NZer

                  No, those responses don’t move it any further,

                  Defaulting, surrendering assets or running deficits don’t (according to your earlier statement of the money supply) create new non-debt based money for the world to use. There is still insufficient money to pay the interest. Clearly this is not true of the world, and clearly exports don’t resolve this as they are internal to the world economy (we still don’t trade with any other planets).

                  The second statement is a non-answer. Foreign exchange transactions don’t create net currency (e.g don’t create or destroy either currency). They are an exchange of one quantity of one currency for another quantity of a different currency, changing who owns the currency. There is still no way for there to be enough created to pay the interest (given there wasn’t enough to pay the interest to begin with, that is).

                  Note the issue for the NZ$ economy is basically applied for the world economy, but de-composed into a bunch of separate currencies which all must make interest payments in their own denominations.

                  As I am suggesting, the payment of interest on the money supply is not an issue to begin with. “So, no this is not a reason we need to export.”

                  • The Chairman

                    You seem to be a little confused.

                    I didn’t claim defaulting creates new non debt based money.

                    Defaulting is the failure to pay.

                    Surrendering assets of the same value as the loan/interest liability offsets the burden.

                    Running deficits puts off the burden.

                    Export revenue, on the other hand, grows our money supply interest free. Again, giving us the fiscal scope to cover our local burden.

                    Trade surpluses can and have been sufficient for nations to meet their burden, but not all nations do.

                    When one nation faces insufficient funds, another one or more will be the benefactor (trade wise).

                    If one nation has insufficient funds (and a number do) the above (defaulting, surrendering assets or running deficits) is generally what happens.

                    While straight foreign exchange transactions don’t create net currency, you are forgetting new export revenue is being added, thus increasing the local money supply (interest free).

                    The interest burden on our debt based money supply is indeed a major issue.

                    When money is created, only the principal enters our economy, therefore how do you think a nation generates the revenue to cover the interest incurred?

                    The current monetary system and the need to export are directly related.

                    • Nic the NZer

                      “Export revenue, on the other hand, grows our money supply interest free. ”

                      This is the statement you need to explain, if somebody decides to buy NZ exports in NZ$, how do they get those funds without borrowing the money (adding to the debt)?

                      Either the funds are taken out of the NZ economy first (by selling imports to NZ) then transferred back later (maybe not during the same period of time, foreigners can hold NZ$, but their supply is limited) Or new funds must be borrowed with an additional interest burden.

                      There is of course a perfectly good explanation for how principal and interest are routinely paid, without involving which ever kind of mental gymnastics you believe explain this.

                  • The Chairman

                    “If somebody decides to buy NZ exports in NZ$, how do they get those funds without borrowing the money (adding to the debt)?”

                    They exchange their foreign funds. Exchanging funds doesn’t create new money (as you pointed out above, there is no net difference to the money supply).

                    If you had a perfectly good explanation , you would have answered the question I put forward to you.

                    I had the courtesy to answer all of yours.

                    • Nic the NZer

                      Well i did assert your theory was nonsense.

                      Anyway, i will put it across now. So the interest is due on a stock of debt based money. But this stock turns over as a flow of spending. As long as the turn over of the stock is large enough the interest on the stock can be paid each period. Its usually about 5% p.a so not a problem to make interest payments.

                      Again nothing to do with exports. So if you are paid a salary and buy goods and services and are paid a salary and buy goods and services again then the flow from a stock of your salary is already twice as large. More than enough to pay about five percent p.a interest.

                  • The Chairman

                    That is totally incorrect.

                    The circulation of money within an economy doesn’t grow the money supply or the nations overall wealth.

                    Therefore, there’s no new funding being generated within the economy to cover the interest the funding incurs.

                    What you have described would result in paying the interest with the initial borrowed funding.

                    Moreover, when the circulation of money is coupled with expenditure on imports and offshore ownership, our wealth and money supply is reduced. Hence, export revenue is vital while operating under the current monetary system.

                    • Nic the NZer

                      Your kidding right?

                      “The circulation of money within an economy doesn’t grow the money supply”

                      Which is the stock and un-changed by circulation.

                      “or the nations overall wealth.”

                      Which is a flow of spending. All that is needed is for the average dollar to be borrowed once and turned over twice and then the resulting flow is twice the stock already. This can and obviously does happen and the average interest rate on debt is only a fraction of the stock anyway. If its 5% then for the interest to be paid that year, the average dollar needs only turn over about 1.05 times per year.

                      “What you have described would result in paying the interest with the initial borrowed funding.”

                      Yes, exactly. And if the lenders pay their staff then this even goes back into circulation again.

                      Its even measured, the velocity of money for US, M3 shown here even shows this occurring for money stocks (rather than debt stocks),
                      For the flow not to exceed the stock the variable LogM3v would have to be zero at all times, which it’s not!

                      The underlying problem your statements about spending face is, as you conceded earlier, exports don’t produce additional funding anyway. If paying the interest is a problem imports can’t possibly solve it.

                  • The Chairman

                    No, I’m not kidding.

                    While the circulation of money within an economy generates revenue for some and results in expenditure for others, it doesn’t grow the nations money supply. Thus, leaving no new funding created to cover the interest incurred on the initial funding.

                    The velocity of money is the rate at which money changes hands within an economy over a period of time. For example, say our money supply equates to $1 and that $1 changes hands several times in a year, GDP will be calculated to be several dollars but the money supply remains $1.

                    Paying the interest with the initial borrowed funding can be done, however it will quickly render the pool dry. Requiring more funding to be borrowed, attracting further interest.

                    Bank returns largely head offshore, further reducing the local money supply. What they pay their staff, thus what goes back into local circulation is a mere drop in the bucket.

                    I didn’t concede exports don’t produce new funding. My argument is exactly the opposite.

                    Exporting is how a nation grows its wealth, potentially giving us the fiscal scope to cover the interest incurred in our debt based monetary system.

                    • Nic the NZer

                      “While the circulation of money within an economy generates revenue for some and results in expenditure for others, it doesn’t grow the nations money supply.”

                      Which is what I said.

                      “Thus, leaving no new funding created to cover the interest incurred on the initial funding.”

                      You seem to be under the miss-apprehension that interest payments reduce the stock of money. Interest payments are a flow of payment (like a lenders income), and as long as lenders re-spend them (e.g pay their staff) then they re-enter circulation.

                      “Paying the interest with the initial borrowed funding can be done, however it will quickly render the pool dry.”

                      No, that’s a miss-apprehension on your part. When you pay the interest of the loan, then the loan is not paid down and the stock of financial assets (money) does not shrink. When you pay down the principal on-top of the interest then the loan does shrink however. Just as borrowing creates money, repaying the debt destroys it. This should be clear to anybody who has had a loan, just from looking at a series of statements of how much they owe over time.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 2.3

      I get this feeling too.

      When the mafia thugs come around for protection money, and the cops are on the take, a principled stand will just get you killed.

      • Jones 2.3.1

        Very good point… there are examples aplenty of how the US rolls when it doesn’t get its own way.

    • mpledger 2.4

      Key capitulates to American interests so it’s not going to happen *but* NZ should the TPPA and take everyone but the USA with us and sign a deal that is purely about trade.

    • Blue Sky 2.5

      Trade is good if it is fair. The problem is that the TPP comes with some nasty fish hooks for democracy regarding offshore investors which are probably already influencing NZ government decisions. Is offshore investment contributing fairly to the nation’s economy and society? And I do not mean simply injecting capital which can easily be moved out again.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.6

      Yeah, well, all I can say about that is that Easton is still in 19th century economics. He usually makes some good points here and there but, like most economists and politicians, he hasn’t yet realised that trade should be a nice to have and not a necessity.

      • Wayne 2.6.1


        Is this intended to be a serious comment, “trade should be a nice to have and not a necessity.”

        Where do you think New Zealand is going to get its pharmaceuticals, motor-vehicles, aircraft, just about every kind of electronics, etc. In fact just about everything a modern society needs are the products of industrialization and basically we don’t make them and neither can we ever make more than a small fraction of the range of things we need. There is simply no way for New Zealand to create all these things, and that was true even when we had import licencing. We assembled things, we did not actually make them from raw materials.

        Presumably you are aware that literally since it formation, New Zealand has fundamentally been a trading nation. The foundations of our prosperity are dependent on that fact.

        To provide everything a modern society needs basically requires the concerted effort of around 500 million people. So the EU can provide every modern thing that it needs, so can the US, and so can China and East Asia. It is the reason why the US economy is not nearly as heavily dependent on trade as ours. But even among these three great industrial blocs there are inefficiencies that drives trade among them. As an example Germany makes better machine tools than anyone else.

        More seriously if those who are anti-TPP use as the argument that trade is simply a luxury, then they will be held up to ridicule. And I would note that way too many of the radical objectors, at least of the Green hue, seem to be in this space. And I know it was this kind of sentiment that really exasperated Tim Groser.

        To avoid this trap, I would note that Labour’s press release on TPP started with the point that it supports free trade.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Where do you think New Zealand is going to get its pharmaceuticals, motor-vehicles, aircraft, just about every kind of electronics, etc. In fact just about everything a modern society needs are the products of industrialization and basically we don’t make them and neither can we ever make more than a small fraction of the range of things we need. There is simply no way for New Zealand to create all these things, and that was true even when we had import licencing.

          Load of bollocks.

          We could produce all the pharmaceuticals that we use here. It’s all done by machine after all. We could probably even develop them although working in conjunction with other countries would help on that score.

          As for cars – yes, we could produce them here. Again, we have the resources and they’re produced by machines. Of course, we should be getting rid of cars to help prevent climate change.

          Aircraft could be made here as well. We have ~25 million tonnes of bauxite in Northland and our ironsands contain a huge amount of titanium and, yet again, they’re made by machines.

          The way we get to produce all that we require is through increased productivity and all that means putting in place all the necessary automated infrastructure. We should have been doing this for decades but, for some stupid bloody reason, we came to believe that we couldn’t do it ourselves.

          Presumably you are aware that literally since it formation, New Zealand has fundamentally been a trading nation. The foundations of our prosperity are dependent on that fact.

          Wrong. Our prosperity is based upon the fact that we developed our economy to provide what we wanted. Over the last few decades we’ve undermined that.

          To provide everything a modern society needs basically requires the concerted effort of around 500 million people.


          Food requires ~2% of the working population in growing food.
          Health ~1% (and I’m probably over estimating that from my reading of what we have now)
          Deliveries around the nation I haven’t actually seen the figures for but, at a guess, ~5% but that would include all home deliveries for food/other orders. We’d have to maximise effectiveness and that would mean using trains rather than trucks.
          Builders around 1% but we could possibly go to 2% for a short time to build up housing stock
          Retail would be a thing of the past – you go online. Again, we need effectiveness.

          I’d be surprised if we needed 50% of our working population working to do all the necessary stuff. The other 50% could be in R&D to develop the stuff that you think we’d be missing out on. That’s just under 2 million people in R&D.

          This would apply to every country if they developed their own economies rather than pulled out raw resources to feed the developed economies so that they could then export back to the undeveloped countries. Trade would still happen but it would be information and a few luxury items here and there. It most definitely wouldn’t be necessary.

          But even among these three great industrial blocs there are inefficiencies that drives trade among them.

          No, what drives trade among them is our delusional financial system that’s designed to make a few people rich.

          I would note that Labour’s press release on TPP started with the point that it supports free trade.

          I support free-trade. The difference is that I support it through standards rather than agreements and realise that free-trade must inevitably result in little to no trade.

          • Nck

            Really liked that response Draco….

          • Wayne


            Why do you think Airbus and Boeing now make virtually all the worlds civil aircraft?

            Would be competitors (Bombardier Sukhoi, CAC) are unable to make aircraft as fuel efficient as either the new models of the A320 or B737.

            Similarly there are only a small number of engine makers (GE, Pratt & Whitney, RR and various consortia including these companies). Neither the Russians or the Chinese can make engines as fuel efficient as the main manufacturers.

            These days Aeroflot has to use aircraft made by Boeing and Airbus in order to be competitive.

            It is simply futile and also grossly misleading to suggest New Zealand could make such aircraft. And so it is for a whole lot of medical equipment, such as MRS machines.

            • BM

              Draco thinks we should have a space program.

              Open mike 20/12/2015

              Draco lives in his own little world.

              • Draco T Bastard

                Draco thinks we should have a space program.

                Yep, I do. It’s a solid platform for all that R&D I keep saying that we need.

                And I live in this world. You, Wayne and RWNJs in general live centuries in the past. Labour might, just might, be realising the the now and the future is not like the past.

            • framu

              would you also agree its grossly misleading to paint opposition to the TPP as being anti trade?

            • Draco T Bastard

              Why do you think Airbus and Boeing now make virtually all the worlds civil aircraft?

              Because of our delusional financial system and IP protocols that prevent people actually developing their own solutions.

              Would be competitors (Bombardier Sukhoi, CAC) are unable to make aircraft as fuel efficient as either the new models of the A320 or B737.

              Neither the Russians or the Chinese can make engines as fuel efficient as the main manufacturers.

              Of course they can. If it was done once then it can be done again. The problem most likely isn’t that they can’t but because of the concept of economies of scale (which 3D printing will see the end of) and patents.

              It is simply futile and also grossly misleading to suggest New Zealand could make such aircraft.

              No, it really isn’t. It’s grossly misleading and downright pathetic to say that we shouldn’t try.

              And so it is for a whole lot of medical equipment, such as MRS machines.

              How many people does it take to R&D such a machine? Two or three hundred? How many then to build them? Of course that latter bit does require the build up of infrastructure:

              * Extraction of raw resources
              * Processing of those resources
              * Building the factories

              Building this stuff is what the government should be doing. Especially the latter as we should be doing huge R&D into 3D printing so the factories that we build can produce anything and aren’t restricted by economies of scale.

            • Duncan

              Half of Air NZ’s fleet is made up of aircraft manufactured by Bombardier, Aerospatiel and Beechcraft, and almost half of new orders are from those manufacturers.
              And you will probably say, well yes, but they only fly the regional routes.
              The fact is, all of Air NZ’s profits are made on domestic routes. Nothing is made on international routes overall, although one or two are profitable.
              There is always a place for niche players, and NZ is exactly that sort of place.
              What is wrong for NZ is the continued attempt to become a global supplier of industrial intensive and environmentally destructive dairy products.
              NZ would be far better building an aerospace industry, as we have done in the past.

          • tinfoilhat

            Draco it’s quite depressing that you make those on the right of politics look sensible.

            • Draco T Bastard

              Neither the Left nor the Right-wing look sensible as they’re both stuck in thinking that is centuries old and has proven that it doesn’t work time and time again.

          • pat

            bananas….what about bananas?

    • seeker 2.7



      Bryan Gould lays out very clearly why the TPP is not a ‘trade’ agreement as we know it

      And as for Japan….. they seem to be almost as untrustworthy as our government


      Good on you for marching and thankyou as i have a bit of a leg and spine injury at the mo. but I’m with you in march spirit!

      • ianmac 2.7.1

        Thanks Seeker. Bryan writes, “It (the Multilateral Agreement on Investment (MAI)) was originally worked on in secret, but when the draft was leaked in 1997, it drew widespread criticism from civil society groups and developing countries, particularly over the perceived intention and danger that the agreement would make it difficult for governments to regulate foreign investors.”
        So the real reason for secrecy!

  3. Puckish Rogue 3

    No it isn’t. Labour has consistently said that they support free trade.

    Just like these guys come in peace:

    This is just posturing by Andrew Little,he knows Labour won’t get into power so he can say whatever he likes

  4. shorts 4

    so its Garner’s “ill informed” rant against the TPPA opposed by a unscientific poll of largely ill informed people saying labour was right in opposing the deal

    there are better arguments to be had than those purely against Garner who is at best inconsistant

  5. Bill 5

    I wish people – including the Labour Party – would get their heads around trade.

    First up. For the Labour Party to claim it has always supported ‘free trade’ is a lie.

    Secondly. For the Labour Party to announce it’s always supported trade is just just so obvious that it isn’t worth stating. I’ll put it this way – I don’t know anyone who is opposed to trade. Hell, as a market abolitionist, I have no problem with trade. Why would I have?

    Trade isn’t, wasn’t and never will be the issue. What matters are the rules that determine how trade is conducted.

    Any trade (either more or less regulated) happening in the context of a market economy is trade happening within the auspices of a fucked up framework. Free trade is just that framework pushing itself to an extreme.

    Are Labour really meaning to say they’ve always supported some form of market economy? If that’s the case, then they should just say that instead of suggesting that all trade, is de facto, trade that happens in the context of market economics.

  6. Ad 6

    He is but one of many influential New Zealanders placing a major bet in the hands of the majority of US Republicans who control the Senate and Congress. That’s not a bunch of people I’d trust to make rational decisions right now. Best of luck Duncan!

  7. Peter Bradley 7

    The silent majority will go along with most things in general as long as it doesn’t disrupt their lives too much. These types of trade agreements are, historically speaking, relatively new so people are willing to accept them until they experience something to change their minds.
    You will not witness significant concern about or opposition to the TPPA until it’s impacts begin to be felt and experienced by a wide breadth of NZ society.

    Things like PHARMAC not being able to afford certain future drug treatments. Drug treatments that are available to citizens in developing countries like India that use generics and aren’t in the TPPA. NZ citizens will need to die in reasonably significant numbers before that sinks in and stirs a stronger opposition.
    What about our government being sued successfully by a foreign company because of a law change to protect peoples health or the environment? How will NZ taxpayers feel when millions of dollars are paid out to a foreign companies or law changes reversed? When that actually happens – at some point in the future – people will be shocked and outraged in greater numbers.
    How will local business feel when foreign companies get special protections and compensation from the tax payer that puts local business at significant competitive disadvantage in their own market?
    These things will actually have to happen first and over time genuine opposition will grow and not just in NZ. Until then the TPPA – in it’s current form – is going ahead.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.1

      You will not witness significant concern about or opposition to the TPPA until it’s impacts begin to be felt and experienced by a wide breadth of NZ society.

      We’re actually witnessing it now. This is probably due to the previous FTAs that we’ve entered into.

    • Reddelusion 7.2

      And what you say ain’t going to happen , your making this stuff up

    • Reddelusion 7.3

      And what you say ain’t going to happen , your making this stuff up

  8. Blue Sky 8

    I fear you are right. People are not paying attention to the implications and consequences of the contract. The vision of this government is myopic.

  9. Tautuhi 9

    People in NZ don’t think, they let MSM and John Key think for them?

  10. b waghorn 10

    If its such a good trade deal you would think that farmers would be singing its praises , but most of the feed back I’ve seen in the farmer papers and fb pages is negative.

  11. swordfish 11

    Recent Polls on the TPPA conducted by major pollsters …….

  12. ropata 12

    The thing that scares me about the TTPA is that it looks like the Asia-pacific version of the EU and look how that turned out for small countries like Ireland and Greece.

  13. Duncan 13

    Garner is the worst type of commentator. Pretending he is the new John Campbell is bad enough in itself. But now he is promoting himself as a man of the people, of the north. A pig hunter in boat shoes, a rapist of the oceans, and an all round greedy bugger.
    Garner’s diatribe is always the same. Terrible thing happening. John Key sitting on his hands doing nothing. Here’s what needs to happen. House prices still going up. House Price Forecast to continue rising. Buster robbing me blind. Hey, I have a house making plenty. John Key is awesome. Labour hate free trade. Godzone is wonderful.
    Time for another scoff of that free pizza.

  14. The Chairman 14

    Has Labour confirmed it will walk away from the deal if it can’t renegotiate it?

    Has anyone in the media asked this vital question?

    • ropata 14.1

      no because it’s a diversion dickhead.
      why hassle Labour about some shit that National is pulling?

      • The Chairman 14.1.1

        The possibility of renegotiating the deal is slim.

        Therefore, voters have a legitimate right to know where Labour will stand if they fail to renegotiate the deal.

  15. Tanz 15

    It’s a lessening of Nationhood and an embracing of global politics. That’s why the UN is all for it. We will lose power and sovereignty and many rights. What a sellout. Labour is divided over it, while Key is selling us out. pathetic. all the same really.

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