Some time ago I profiled one of NZ’s most influential socialists, Peter Harris .
Peter Harris has played key roles in the union movement and the Labour Party. He has served as an economic advisor, to Minister of Finance, Michael Cullen, he sits on the Electricity Commission (with two other socialist leaning individuals), is an associate of the Department of Labour’s, Partnership Resource Centre (riddled with former SUP types). He has chaired Michael Cullen’s Savings Product Working Group.
Now he’s at it again.
ACT MP Heather Roy recently questioned why Treasury officials were forced to take a back seat to a union economist when Cabinet considered allowing State Owned Enterprises to invest outside their core areas of business.
“Today in Parliament I asked why Peter Harris’ word was trusted over that of Treasury officials“, Mrs Roy said.
“Mr Harris – a well known PSA and CTU economist – was behind recommendations that SOEs should be able to invest outside their core areas of business.
“SOEs are companies owned by government, and funded with taxpayer money.
“Treasury was clearly concerned that SOEs had weak accountability disciplines, that Ministers with multiple objectives had difficulty selecting projects, and that money diverted by SOEs could provide a better return elsewhere.*
“Treasury are our experts on fiscal policy. Mr Harris’ background reportedly includes the Labour Party’s Policy Council, the Socialist Unity Party and Massey University.
“Yet Trevor Mallard accepted the word of his comrade over the advice of officials.
“If Government isn’t going to listen to Treasury’s advice, why do they even seek it?
New Zeal So Mr Harris is the driving force behind the proposal to allow SOE’s to compete even more vigourously with the private sector?
Such a proposal, if fully implemented, will have huge implications for NZ’s economy. Coupled with local government’s rapid expansion since being granted “power of general competence”, we are being Put well and truly back on the socialist road.
So here we have a man who used to write for Marxist-Leninist theoretical journals, who was an economic advisor to Mugabe’s Zimbabwe, steering this country down the path of increased state control. This man has never been elected to any government post, yet has far more influence than most MPs.
No cause for concern is it? I can see why the mainstream media don’t bother much examining Mr Harris’ agenda. Silly of me to raise it really.