Although as late as 2001, Sue Bradford was yearning for a “true Internationale, one which has the hope of achieving world-wide revolutionary change“, you won’t hear her say the “S” word, let alone the “C” word, much in public these days.
At number three on the Green Party list in 2005, Sue Bradford now has to put on a respectable face.
True, she still works closely with the communist controlled UNITE union on raising youth wages, but its a long time since she was arrested, invaded some bastion of capitalism or jumped fully clothed into some millionaire’s swimming pool.
Bradford is still the chairman of the radical Auckland People’s Centre, but you won’t see her standing on a street corner with a megaphone rallying her motley followers against ACT, or National, the Business Round Table, or “New Right” policies.
As her Green party bio states: There are three ways to make radical social and environmental change. 1) Working within the system; 2) throwing rocks at the system from outside; 3) building new organisations within the shell of the old system.
Clearly Sue Bradford’s rock throwing days are over. To most people she is now “working within the system.”
What about option three? Is Sue Bradford “building a new organisation?
Sue Bradford’s Green Party bio also states that she is a trustee of the Kotare Research and Education for Social Change Trust, “which focuses on participatory adult education for organisations working towards justice, environmental sustainability and positive social change”.
Kotare is the Maori word for Kingfisher, a truly lovely and rarely seen bird. The name sounds pretty innocuous doesn’t it? But what is this Kotare Trust? What does it do? Should we care? The next few posts will look at the Kotare “School”, its personnel, its “kaupapa”, its activities and Sue Bradford’s very prominent role within the organisation.