Red Rik Returns-Combating Capitalism, Cow Cockies

The local body elections have brought some old faces to the fore.

In my neck of the woods, Richard Tindall is standing for Environment Canterbury on the the anti-dairy farming, Save Our Water ticket.

Canterbury aquifers are being emptied and contaminated with excessive animal waste. The public will be asked to pay for water treatment and supply, on the present course of dairy farm expansion, unless we say No! – by voting SOW.

City, farm, public and tangata whenua all share a positive future within a healthy environment, if this becomes conscious Council strategy. Save Our Water is the electoral campaign to bring that balance into play.

A computer services company manager and history honours graduate, with forebears in Canterbury for 135 years and a production focus, I promise you the communication necessary to bring your voice to local government.

Richard might be Green and caring now, but when I first became aware of him several years back, he was a raving red.

Rik Tindall as he called himself then was involved in student politics at Canterbury University in the early ’80s.

In 1982 Rik was elected onto the UCSA exec for ’83 but did not serve. Instead he travelled overseas, visiting Europe, the Balkans, Egypt and China. He claims that his experiences influenced his ideas in the direction of socialism.

in 1986 Rik returned to NZ to complete a BA in Pol Sci at Victoria University.

By the ealy ’90s Rik was back at Canterbury, waving placards and wearing a Trotsky cap and goatee.

For a brief priod Rik was Christchurch rep of David Bedggood’s tiny Trotskyist sect, Workers Power.

In the mid ’90s Rik was Canterbury Uni’s resident radical. No demo was complete without Rik and his placard.

In November 1993, Rik was spokesman for the Canterbury Uni Education Action Group mob who occupied the universty council chambers at General Election time in protest at higher tuition fees.

Rik was also involved in the Maoist leaning Campaign for Peoples Sovereignty and the Trotskyist leaning Campaign for Student Democracy and Canterbury University Progressive Left club.

In 1994 Rik was involved in the Marxian Research and Communictions Co-operative, the University Mens Education Network and the Canterbury University Marxist Society.

That year he was also paid by the Students Association to co-ordinate student protest activity. UCSA also commissioned Rik to write a history of Canterbury Uni student protest-“Generations in Dissent”

In 1995 I saw Rik at the Hiroshima Day rally in cathedral Square carrying a “Committee for International Workers Revolution” placard.

In 1996 Rik was studying at Christchurch Polytech and still leading the revolution. He took part in a student bus convergence on Welligton in yet another protest at student fees.

In recent years Rik has been working in the open software movement, another hobbyhorse of the left.

Clearly, cow cockying is incompatible with communism.


Author: Admin

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7 thoughts on “Red Rik Returns-Combating Capitalism, Cow Cockies

  1. Trev:

    I usually agree with you, but I think you are well off the mark in branding the Open Software Movement a hobby-horse of the left.

    It’s a good idea and develops some good software. Your blog probably is transmitted on systems using Apache and Linux, fine products from the Open Software Movement.

    It doesn’t ask for any privileges.

    Sun Microsystems and IBM, hardly leftist organisations, help Open Software.

  2. Trevor, good to see you again, busy. Knowing others so well as you like to depict though, are you sure you really know yourself?

    This biographical effort is a great compliment, thanks – quite an ego boost for having merited it. I promise to work even harder in future! 🙂

    But your writing evidences the right-wing penchant for misinformation (readers, be warned). Here are two such corrections:

    i) I have never been, nor ever will be, sympathetic to Maoism. Three weeks of mid-eighties train travel through China, ending in gastroenteritis, qualified me as tourist and no more.

    ii) I was never “paid by the Students Association to co-ordinate student protest activity”, although it may have appeared thus, being highly motivated for educational equity. Consequently, the UCSA commissioning of “Generations in Dissent” was a legitimate and rewarding exercise of the historian’s craft. Great fun, earning citation: – Can you refer us to one similar for your work please Trevor?

    So just to update, like anyone with an open and inquiring mind, I have found 1.75 years’ Green experience to be a great tutor – like every other framework of thought one might flexibly explore – and a homecoming. This has taught me that ‘the political spectrum’ is more appropriately defined as a circle, where libertarians like Act meet some versions of Anarchism: on the less-populated arc, wanting a truly free market and no state. On that basis I look forward to a coffee with you one day, to better understand your politics and person.

    “Sustainability and capitalism are mutually exclusive”, we might debate.

    Regards, Rik

  3. Facinating also how Rik divides people into ‘tangata whenua’ and the rest.

    It’s always about dividing people into little boxes for socialists isn’t it?


  4. There always seems to be plenty of the folding to keep these dudes in chardonnay and shandies. Life at university must be a sweet ride for those in the know.


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