Oceania nation resonates as perfect sounding board for social activist Atlantic policies
United Nations exercises a supranational influence over New Zealand’s body politic in a way that has not been experienced since the waning of Westminster’s sway followed soon after by Washington’s.
Nothing emphasises this realignment more than the view that the nation’s highest office, that of prime minister, is but a way station en route to assuming the real power which resides in the real high office which is that of secretary general of United Nations.
Former New Zealand prime minister Helen Clark had, at best, a good outsider’s chance in her determined run for the secretary-generalship of United Nations.
Current prime minister Jacinda Ardern is said to be heading into poll position should she at any time in the next 30 or so years either seek the assignment or be tapped for it.
The nation’s bureaucracy has long been attuned to the United Nations ethos and this was demonstrated by its unquestioning belief in a Clinton victory at the last US presidential elections.
Also discarded in this new version of progressive realpolitik is the alignment that once centred on Canberra, notably during the Whitlam and Hawke eras.
Canberra, like Washington and Westminster has been shouldered aside in this new orientation to a new magnetic north.
Prone to believing polls, whole segments of New Zealand’s government found it hard to disguise their fervour in the forecast electoral victory of Bill Shorten and their sense of loss when this failed to come to pass.
From self-dramatizing inquests into its own rumoured official bullying (actually, officiousness) through hate speech (offensive), diversity and multi culturalism and the unifying climate movement, it is United Nations that now incarnates the yearnings of New Zealand’s parliamentary Labour government.
So what caused the inspirational compass to swing so abruptly from East to West?
Beijing’s Marco Polo attractions continue to fade, and only partly due to awkward and embarrassing trade imperatives.
New Zealand’s political Prester John impulse to lead the East into following its more progressive ways have simply dissolved amid Beijing’s ferocious militarism and intolerance of things like diversity, multiculturalism.
Contrary to a view once accepted as a geopolitical article of faith and voiced by former National Party prime minister Jim Bolger that New Zealand was “part of Asia,” those were his words, the nation instead has reconfigured itself on a trans Atlantic axis.
The New Zealand body politic draws its inspiration from an axis rooted in New York at United Nations.
Britain never truly on-message since Tony Blair’s day is nonetheless dipped into.
But merely to superheat on views on climate from only a very few selective sources such as The Guardian and the BBC.
Then the short hop across the English Channel to the terminus of this particular axis which is Paris, the city of enlightenment for this repositioning.
The body politic involved in this realignment includes the nation’s regional and district councils usually referred to as local bodies.
Once pre-occupied with the administration of roads and rubbish collection their elected members nowadays so often put a priority on the rather more rarified and thus engaging globalist procedures involved in podcasting their support for the policies of United Nations.
New Zealand has been a member of the UN security council on several occasions. Even more significantly its diplomats Sir Leslie Munro and more recently Terence O’Brien have served as presidents of the security council.
United Nations has traditionally sought as its secretary general someone from a non-aligned nation meaning a candidate beyond the Western Alliance or the old communist bloc.
As New Zealand politics at so many levels enters a new, and supercharged phase of institutional moral reformation its elected at so many levels see an opportunity to transcend the mundane in echoing this new Atlantic policy centred on United Nations Plaza on Manhattan’s East River.
Globalism suddenly means more than trade, in which nations are encouraged to focus on what they do best.
It now means a transnational approach to the free exchange of moral movements and without the frontiers and thus the boundaries of geography or even hemispheres.
Antitrust action on information technology sector blamed for opening door to China
In the 1970s and 1980s the United States federal government applied antitrust actions against its two dominant computer and telecommunications companies IBM and AT&T.
The federal government threats and moves to break up these two companies is considered now to have preoccupied the companies to the point at which foreign competition now started to slip through under the cover of the government diversion.
The belief now is that IBM for example became more focussed on coping with the extended anti-trust proceedings than with expanding or holding its 70 percent share of the computer market.
China’s seizing of such a commanding position in this same market is thus regarded as a direct result of the United States federal government’s intervention in the dominance of these two companies.
In short order prior to this trust-busting drive the United States telecommunications and computing sector had come up with three technology breakthroughs: the transistor, the integrated circuit (silicon chip) and the microprocessor.
Only rather later came an understanding that the federal anti monopoly disruption of the information sector had consequences that had not emerged during the much earlier break ups of steel production, oil, and the railways.
Huawei’s appearance as a core telecommunications network supplier in North America is the wakeup call of nightmarish proportions that alerted the United States to the reality that its dominance of this sector was not so much slipping away, as disappearing in a cascade.
Google and Facebook with their subsidiaries such as YouTube and WhatsApp are today’s IBM and AT&T with its Bell System.
They allow the United States to control the narrows of personal point-to-multipoint electronic communication, otherwise known as social media.
Similarly, Apple in its sector and in its turn has been in the shadow of United States federal government trust-busting.
Apple then lost its position in the smart phone market to Huawei.
The reason that the Google and Facebook nexus will remain substantially unfettered is that the United States views itself as a corporate entity whose competition is similarly monolithic in the form of China.
China has what the United States has which is scale.
Experience has shown that smaller countries lacking this and however innovative are unable to lever off this narrower base to present the United States with an enduring threat in this social media category.
France is such a country.
France which is Europe’s most ardent watchdog on the dangers of Google and Facebook was once in technology terms light-years ahead of the United States due to its national effort with its Minitel technology.
The United Kingdom was similarly ahead of this particular game with its Videotex system.
In the event both these technologies languished and are now forgotten because neither country had the population and thus the development base to develop and take to market these early breakthroughs.
Washington will make sympathetic murmurs about the dangers of the untrammelled Google and Facebook duo.
But it has no intention of re-enacting an IBM/ AT&T trust-busting regime for as long as China is breathing down its electronics neck.
Google and Facebook know it.
The knock-down-drag-out story of social media and its favouring of the mega-scale countries is a poignant one and especially so for the Franco-New Zealand campaign to rein in the United States operators.
New Zealand, and this is not generally known, was among the first to refine the programme generation heavy lifting behind the automated coding so important in the development of things such as social networks and their algorithms, the ones which according to the Paris meet, so urgently require “transparency.”
In the event, and justifying current United States suspicions, this programme generation system, led co-incidentally by a Frenchman, was filched by the Chinese under the pretence of buying it.
The only consolation is that these countries are in good company.
Finland’s Nokia, so recently the David in the David and Goliath of smart phones, was acquired by Microsoft another revolving door antitrust candidate.
The same thing happened to Canada, not a particularly small country.
Canada saw its standard-bearing Research in Motion brand Blackberry, once a by-word in the industry and the standard appliance used by politicians everywhere, quickly become motionless, submerged through its absence of hinterland scale.
The United States social media majors cover themselves in feel-good slogans and their representatives when in public have about them the Aw Shucks candour of an Idaho small town family dry goods store proprietor.
Presentation is everything in the world of big-league electronics, especially in the personal communications variety in which the more iron in the fist, the greater the need for the velvet veneer.
Flagship Pike River Re-Entry Policy Threatened by Undetectable Gas
Methane gas has become so politicised that officials are terrified to talk about outside a rigid and approved context and frame of reference.
Nothing underlined the perils attendant on the Labour coalition government’s Pike River mine re-entry fiasco in that a cause of its being aborted was that a “wee” creature had chewed the lead of a gas sensor.
Nothing emphasised the presence and name of this gas as the determination by everyone concerned to avoid mentioning it.
The gas was and is methane gas and it was the culprit in the Pike River mine disaster.
Methane hovers. It is lighter than air.
In its ghostly fashion it cannot be detected by human senses.
Officially we were told that readings on “oxygen” led to the abandonment of the re-entry.
We were told that the “atmosphere” imperilled the re-entry.
The word methane has become so politically-charged that in a contrary way in the Pike River disaster and its aftermath it became conspicuous by its absence.
The re-entry scheme and the reasons for it being aborted encapsulated the basic-science comprehension problem of New Zealand governments since the advent of the professional politician i.e. those who have no background in anything productive beyond word-creation, and posturing.
The notion of the mine being “sealed” was chief among these.
Other than the elaborate and mediagenic barrier at the entrance no other part of the mine is sealed it all.
The mine has been soaking up methane ever since the last explosion there.
Methane gas has been filtering through into the mine from the surrounding geology ever since.
This aggregation will have been accelerated since the official and token sealing of the mine entrance by internal collapses which in turn will have been aggravated by things such as seismic activity, and also by water.
A disused mine is much more dangerous than a working one.
Another threat barely mentioned in the re-entry turn back reasons was the presence of coal dust.
This volatile substance, as with methane, will have collected in the mine over the intervening years.
In this re-entry scheme there would have been no electrics in the mine of the type that powered the ventilation equipment which as the Royal Commission so studiously observed was positioned inside the mine, rather than outside it, the practice everywhere else.
Nobody doubts that methane gas caused the mine to explode.
But the cause of the ignition of the mine methane remains undetermined.
The Pike River mine re-entry has about it the aura of political showboating allied to a victim-culture determination to identify individuals or groups of them responsible for the explosions.
The hunt for SCADA type monitoring recordings centred on the initial explosion and which might prove who exactly did what and when in the lead up to the disaster is only one indicator of this.
Promises to the effect that the re-entry will face a cut-off of one kind or another “by Christmas” only serves to underline the gulf between the productive economy, with all its physical threats as opposed to the politico-bureaucratic one in which threats are reputational.
On one side of this divide is a now long abandoned mine with its deteriorating structure and its accumulated methane.
On the other side, the political ambition to showcase not only a mineral villain, but ideally one or two human ones as well.
Gauche handling of France’s Gauche contrasts with New Zealand premier’s adroit Coup Politique
When Jacinda Ardern shut in the support of her Labour-led coalition government’s ideological left wing support she did so quickly, effortlessly, decisively and effectively.
When Francis’ president Emmanuel Macron tried to the same thing with his eco-ideologues he ignited a carboniferous subterranean smouldering fire akin to those that plague the sites of abandoned mine workings.
The New Zealand Labour government swiftly bonded in its liberal political and media class wing at the outset of its administration with the proclamation of its ban on oil and gas prospecting.
It knew that this bold appeal to high-minded university campus grade purity of thought was going to weld into the Labour-led coalition the climatist movement.
The bold decisiveness of the Labour’s handling of this lock-in contrasts with that of French president Emmanuel Macron.
He was presented at the outset of his presidency with much the same problem in handling the liberal political class base which was responsible for putting him into the Elysees Palace.
In contrast he mishandled the same problem.
The result of this fumbling is there for all to see in, for example, the Gilets Jaunes displays.
These routine and scheduled riots are the result of president Macron’s gauche handling of his own gauche in seeking to apply his own dithering solution to the same problem, that of disarming the fashionable, activist left.
The problem of locking in its media and political class ideological support base was solved by New Zealand’s Labour – led coalition in a military manner that incorporated stealth, deception and surprise to achieve a fait accompli.
The stealth was that discussion about it was limited and restricted and thus there were no leaks.
The surprise was that the oil industry believed that an exploration cloture would be the subject of a fairly prolonged “conversation.”
The deception was that instead of being announced at some environmental summit the scheme was announced to a student gathering.
The decisive delivery was to deliver the anti prospecting proclamation without any warning so early in its term and before the lobbies had the time to do anything about it.
Confronted by this same problem and the same opportunity president Macron in contrast allowed his strategy to become attenuated, drift out of his own hands and thus missed the decisive symbolic moment so deftly exploited by his New Zealand counterpart.
His poor delegation of the problem allowed it fester which had the effect of the accelerating agitation of this noisy ideological base which in France hits in addition to the television studios, the streets for additional theatre value.
President Macron belatedly sought to please this base with its shared and unifying belief in man made global warming and did so with a series of appeasing and symbolic taxation reshuffles.
These were viewed by France’s always restive blue collar, productive, classes as an attempt by president Macron to appease his elitist class support base and do so at the expense of the working classes, this in a nation ultra sensitive to its elites profiting at the expense of the non-privileged.
President Macron‘s decision to increase fuel taxes was viewed as placating the privileged at the expense of the workers
Another move to cater for this elite class was to symbolically reduce France’s speed limit for the benefit of the climatists.
The Gilets Jaunes followed, seemingly unstoppable.
The New Zealand Labour-led coalition’s blunt proclamation sans any trade-offs serves as a standard in the management of the political class and its expectations.
Mr Macron remains mired in his environmental morass in spite of concession after concession.
Current conversations pointedly focus on eliminating the select few universities, notably ENA, that nurture the political class elites that president Macron had so ardently tried to court.
Should France’s Ecole National d’Administration survive the current purge, then a suitable case for study in one of its new classless classes might be the virtuous self-flagellating groupthink in two nations that led the way in renewable energy.
New Zealand did so in hydro electric power, and France with nuclear energy.