From the vaults: Protecting New Zealand capitalism is not in the interests of workers anywhere

21 Jun

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Redline

The article below first appeared in issue #7 of revolution magazine (August/Sept 1998), one of the precursors of this blog.  Its original title was “Have you got protection?”  The core arguments remain highly relevant as economic nationalism still dominates most of the NZ left and the vast bulk of the trade union movement.

downloadby John Edmundson

May Day in New Zealand is not traditionally the focus of large demonstrations by workers.  This year, however, was different.  Textile workers in many centres were given time off work and provided with free bus transport to march alongside their employers in support of a campaign to freeze the tariff reduction programme.  Both employers and workers in the industry are seriously concerned about the long-term viability of clothing manufacture in New Zealand in the face of competition from low-wage Asian economies.

The textile industry in New Zealand employs approximately 25,000 workers and is traditionally…

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