Kua tae te wā – it’s time to break the budget responsibility rules

downloadJames Crichton, chief of the Employment Relations Authority, says our claim is unrealistic. What rubbish! Our teachers’ claim of 16 percent over two years is fully justified to make a teaching career an attractive option. Crichton knows nothing of the reality of being a teacher in an under-funded system – always under stress, never having enough time, working long hours.


The offer of 3 percent for 3 years does not even guarantee a real pay rise if CPI keeps on rising. The latest annual rate of inflation is 1.9 percent, having risen from 1.1 percent in March and 1.5 percent in June. At this rate, by the end of the year CPI could easily be well over 2 percent. Who is to say what could happen over 3 years?


School education needs a transformational funding boost. Labour says it will take time. We can’t wait years. Children and teachers deserve better right now.

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Recent articles

Paris, 1968: 50 years since the barricades

By Jules Courtine   May 1968 is the date of the largest general strike in French history. Over the course of this month, 11 million workers joined a protest which was explicitly anti-capitalist, anti-imperialist and revolutionary. As a result of the strike national production came to a grinding halt, conservative president Charles de Gaulle fled […]

The strike revival

Strike statistics are useful for assessing the state of workers’ militancy. Fortunately section 98 of the Employment Relations Act requires information to be submitted to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) after every strike or lockout. This source provides statistics up to and including 2017. For this year, so far, we must rely […]

Criminal Injustice: Racist Cruelty

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New Perspectives for Rebuilding Union Power

On New Terrain: How Capital is Reshaping the Battleground of Class War By Kim Moody (Haymarket Books, Chicago 2017)   Reviewed by Dougal McNeill   Is there a revival of working-class confidence happening in Aotearoa? The PPTA and NZEI are going into bargaining with big pay claims (e.g. 16 percent over two years for primary […]

Reform and Reaction in Australia: The Story of the Whitlam Labor Government

By Cory Anderson   The Australian government of 1972-75 stands out as one of the most successful reforming governments in history, comparable perhaps to the first Labour government here in Aotearoa or Roosevelt’s ‘New Deal’ in the United States. Led by Gough Whitlam, the Australian Labor Party (ALP) introduced significant reforms, including free tertiary education, […]

Wellington: back the bus drivers!

Hundreds of Wellington region bus drivers in the Tramways Union have voted for an ongoing strike from 23 October. Three bus companies that operate in the region may be affected: NZ Bus, Tranzit and Uzabus. Since the regional council awarded a large chunk of routes to Tranzit, drivers have lost their jobs or work under […]

Rebel Lives: Clara Zetkin

By Martin Gregory   A federal election in Germany was held on 31 July 1932 in the depths of the Great Depression and a political crisis. The Nazis obtained the largest share of the vote and 230 seats in the 608-seat Reichstag. On 30 August the oldest member had the honour of opening the session […]

Fraser High students aren’t losers – solidarity is a life skill

By Andrew Tait Are students who wag school “already statistics of the worst kind”? That’s what one Hamilton principal told her school. Many students didn’t agree, so they organised a walkout the following week. Unlike so-called left commentators like Chris Trotter and right-wing scum bags like Mike Hosking (he called the kids entitled little snots), […]

From the archive

Anzac Day: Against the Carnival of Reaction

mobiliseagainstthewarOn Anzac Day 1967, at the height of New Zealand involvement in the ‘American War’ in Vietnam, with New Zealand troops taking part in the suppression of the Vietnamese struggle for national liberation, members of the Progressive Youth Movement in Christchurch tried to lay a wreath following the dawn service in memory of those killed by imperialism in Vietnam. They were arrested and charged with disorderly behaviour. Feminists a decade later faced down a media-driven public outcry when they laid wreaths to the victims of sexual violence during war.

Lest we forget? It’s more like lest we remember. Anzac Day serves as a carnival of nationalist reaction, a day of public ritual aimed at promoting forgetting: forgetting the real legacy of New Zealand imperialism and militarism in favour of a sentimental nationalism, an anti-political celebration of national unity. [Read More…]