I couldn’t let this piece in todays Herald on Sunday, by Marxist Matt McCarten, go by without a good fisking. Below are some excerpts, with my comments in bold.
Wasn’t the victory for workers in France magnificent this week? Millions of workers and students took to the streets over the past month to staunchly oppose their Government’s attempt to introduce new employment laws. This law was to allow employers to sack any young worker in their first two years for any reason whatsoever.
The French working class and the youth took to the streets day after day. Rolling general strikes were called by the central trade union federations. The cities were paralysed. After several weeks of huffing and puffing, the senior French politicians capitulated. The Government surrendered on every point. It was a complete and humiliating backdown.
New Zealanders should take note from this – of how attacks against working people can be defeated. Dr Wayne Mapp, the National Party’s Political Correctness Terminator, has a bill currently before Parliament that is similar to what the French Government tried to impose. Mapp is proposing that New Zealand employers can legally sack new workers in their first three months without giving a reason or having to justify their actions. National and Act supported this pro-slavery legislation to go to select committee as you would expect. But disappointingly, so did NZ First, United Future and three of the four Maori MPs.
Victory? Bloody victory. The French have just condemned thousands of young people to unnecessarily high unemployment. Joblessness is especially high for immigrant and Muslim youth. That means they will now be denied a chance to enter the French mainstream and enjoy the economic prosperity their parents emigrated for. That means more crime, more Islamic radicalisation, more riots and more social division. Hang on a minute! If you’re a Marxist-Leninist like Matt, maybe it is a victory, after all.
Thankfully, there is a breath of fresh air. The successful fight by young workers employed in fast-food restaurants in Auckland for a better deal gives me hope. The Unite union’s campaign against low wages and youth rates has dovetailed nicely with the Greens’ Sue Bradford’s bill against youth rates.
This is of course a total coincidence. Sue Bradford runs the Kotare School for training young revolutionaries. Radical Youth members such as those who organised the recent march in Queen Street are involved both with the Kotare School and Matt’s UNITE union. If any readers believe this is a coincidence, please contact me ASAP. I own a big bridge that connects Auckland City with the North Shore, that you might like to buy? Very poor form Matt, praising UNITE in your column, without mentioning that you run the organisation.
The most inspiring thing has been the secondary school students who have now come into the frontline of this campaign. Off their own back, 1000 Auckland students left school a couple of weeks ago and marched in protest at their discriminatory wages.
What total rubbish. Several Radical Youth leaders are the sons and daughters of well known Auckland socialists. A few organised and well supported agitators can easily get a certain number of naive teenagers to go along with damn near anything.
The students have taken them at their word and have organised a second march against youth wages on May 1, after school finishes.
Buses are being arranged to take students to Aotea Square. The student organisers are requesting teachers and parents come too.
Who’s providing the buses Matt? I’ bet UNITE is, like it did last time. Without UNITE and probably Kotare, Radical Youth would be nothing. This stuff is nothing new. The Communist Party had the Young Communist League, the Progressive Youth League and the Progressive Youth Movement. Sue Bradford’s People’s Network had the Aotearoa Youth Network and the National Youth Network. Your comrades in the Australian Democratic Socialist Perspective/Socialist Alliance have their youth wing, Resistance. Every one of these so called independent youth groups worked or works in the interests of the parent party. Radical Youth is no different Matt and you know it.
This next generation is showing real spine. The challenge for other workers and the rest of New Zealand is, do we expect them to fight on their own or do we support them? Like the French showed the world, when students and workers take to the streets together to send a message to politicians, they win.
On May Day we’ll see if the youth are on their own or if the rest of New Zealand is going to support them.
Spine? What cobblers. Real courage is taking an individual stand, not stirring up mobs of silly schoolkids to take the hits for you. The courageous kids are the ones who do so well at work that the boss wil give them a wage rise before even being asked. You should be deeply ashamed of yourself Matt, for using your column to write what you must know is pure propaganda. The Herald should be ashamed for allowing you the column space to do it.