TPPA Local Government Campaign

The Movement Grows

- Greg Rzesniowiecki

Te Waka A Māui (1) Catches A Big Fish In The End

We in TPP Action placed a huge effort into making the November 8 (2014) TPPA rallies a success. We wanted a big turn out from the public as this we felt would promote public awareness of the TPPA implications. In Wellington coordination was through two groups. Wellington TPPA Action centred on the Wellington City Council area, led by Ariana Paretutanganui-Tamati. Also, a central coordination committee convened under the auspices of the Council of Trade Unions, and facilitated by their economist Bill Rosenberg, ensured the union movement and socially motivated public groups were involved.

Both these met weekly, planning and actioning activity – we wanted the Wellington rally to be huge. Previous rallies traditionally culminated at Parliament. However, with the focus on gaining local government to adopt our TPPA policy solution, we determined to have as the culminating focus Wellington’s Civic Square. The plan evolved: we would assemble at the Bucket Fountain in Cuba Street Mall and march the short distance to Civic Square. In addition to this I was requested by Levin TPP Action's Ian Todd to address their rally held that morning from 11:00am. This saw me offer a speaking contribution at both events punctuated by a pleasant drive through Kapiti, Porirua and along the picturesque Wellington Harbour. These areas we want TPPA-free.

Levin Rally

The Levin rally was well attended and offered a variety of speakers. Sam Fergusson was MC and introduced Ian Todd who commenced proceedings with a detailed exposition of the Investment Chapter of the TPPA illustrating the problem of investor-State dispute settlement (ISDS), citing a number of investment arbitration cases and their effects. I followed Ian, and below offer my speaker’s notes which expound on what we are about with this campaign. I departed for the Wellington rally after this. Other folk to address the Levin rally were: Aroha Priest who gave the karanga or karakia; Jean Kahui from Kapiti Frack supported by street theatre friends (Jean discussed fracking and the implications for the Resource Management Act); Dr. Viola Palmer a retired medical practitioner, on Pharmac; Lyn Olsthoorn of the NZ Nurses’ Organisation,  on health implications; Astarte, on intellectual property and copyright issues; there were musicians who supported between speakers - Dean Murray, Tony Burgess, Steve Poulton. A great rally and effort from Levin; thanks for having me along.

Greg's Address – Levin TPPA Rally

“Once again we come together in response to the free trade and investment agreement agenda. Those promoting the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA or TTP) aim to bind us to rules promoting corporations’ interests. This does not address our needs. Our needs are for a sustainable and resilient State that protects and enhances our quality of life. It is plain common sense. Early in my life and schooling, it was impressed upon me that the object of civilisation was to become more civilised. How do we achieve this? Our civilisation in the West and New Zealand is becoming increasingly greedy and focused on individual outcomes at the cost of community well-being.

“This is clear with central Government's removal of the Four Well-beings from the 2002 Local Government Act purposes in its 2012 review and subsequent amendment. The Four Well-beings required that Government's purpose was to ensure the social, economic, environmental and cultural well being. This removal is theft! Consider the implications. Central Government ignored the submissions of our local government sector, including the peak body Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) and the New Zealand Human Rights Commission, who all said to central Government to leave the Well-beings intact.

“Why is this done to our councils and local government sector? The free trade agreement agenda is all about profit. The Four Well-beings are about beneficial social outcomes. Once upon a time we understood that local government's role was to ensure that the needs of the local community were met. Surely this is the role of Government? What other purpose do they have? We were told about the idea called democracy. How do we make it work for public good? It only works when we engage in it. Through our engagement we direct our politicians to arrive at the correct conclusions, and make decisions that both protect and enhance our interests.

“We in TPP Action have been doing that on your behalf in our TPPA campaign. This grew out of an initiative by Nelson TPP Action who adopted the TPPA policy formula from Auckland City Council. They lobbied their Council, who adopted the policy in July 2013. Motueka Renewables led the charge with the Tasman District Council who made their decision in March 2014 to adopt our TPPA policy. Commencing 20th March 2014 we wrote to every Council and their Councillors, placing our TPPA policy before their annual plans as well as asking the Councils for adoption.

“The snowball gains momentum. To date: Auckland, Nelson, Tasman, Christchurch and Dunedin Councils have supported our TPPA policy formula. Others have supported variations. TPP Action has made presentations in public forums to many other councils: Invercargill City Council, Southland Regional Council, Clutha District Council, Wellington City Council, Greater Wellington Regional Council, Kapiti Coast District Council, and Hutt City Council. 6th November (2014) saw local TPP Action in Napier present to their City Council. We now wait to see what that Council will do with their request for the TPPA to be considered formally by the Council.

“In addition to this - TPP Action in the regions lobbied the following councils which have expressed concern about the TPPA: Greater Wellington Regional, Palmerston North City, Horizons Regional, Horowhenua District, and Wanganui District Councils have adopted various TPPA policy formulas directing NZ negotiators to look after the Kiwi public interest. Each of these presentations or interventions in the public forum represents considerable work by the groups and individuals concerned. Personally, and since March 2014, I've travelled thousands of kilometres in Tinkerbell, my Liteace van. Along this journey I have camped on Mt. Eden in Auckland and on Mt. Victoria in Wellington. I've been to Invercargill and camped on a blustery June night at Bluff Point. All good and fun. Kiwis from all over this land have contributed at least $6,000 in money or in kind support to the 'TPP Roadie'. This is how I meet expenses. This support enables me to keep moving and sharing about the TPPA.

The Solution To The TPPA

“It is an agreement that protects and advances the community's public interest. The large South Island city councils at Christchurch and Dunedin agree and in August (2014) they both supported our TPPA policy formula. The decision at Christchurch was unanimous and, further, they requested that Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) do likewise. Other councils have indicated that they support LGNZ adopting a TPPA policy. For this to be the correct policy, we actively encourage them to protect and enhance our interests. We do this by sharing with other communities, informing them and encouraging them to lobby their councils to agree to our TPPA policy.

“The current focus is the Wellington region's councils. TPP Action is working to gain the support of the: Wellington City, Hutt City, Upper Hutt City, Porirua City, Kapiti Coast District, and the Greater Wellington Regional Councils. In addition to presenting to councils we have held public meetings and will be doing more. Activists from Kapiti TPP Concern have made representation to the Council's Corporate Business Committee in October (2014), and subsequently to the Council's Public Participation Forum, also in October, where a full half hour was taken with TPPA discussion. We need more pressure and it may be that the next thing to do with Kapiti Coast District Council is to launch the TPPA policy formula petition at it. This will add to the pressure to get the TPPA placed on Council's agenda. Council will only make a decision once the matter is formally on its’ business paper. New Zealand's Trade Negotiation Division (TND) negotiators must be made to understand that any deal they negotiate is a dead duck unless it protects and enhances our public interest. Our TPPA policy is the only story. Only you, in community with others, can ensure your interest is protected. Share the story with everyone. We hold a vision of a sovereign State acting for the welfare of its inhabitants, seas, waterways and land”.

Wellington Rally

I met the Wellington rally coming out of Cuba Street, as I drove into the Civic Square precinct. Wow, there were masses of them, chanting and colourful. I found a park and left Tinkerbell to join the tail end of the throng entering the Square. I was amongst thousands. I was awed by the feel of the event, and the effectiveness of our promotion. I made my way to the steps we appropriated for the stage. From this vantage point it was obvious the Square was packed. Banners and colour, and a sea of faces are the picture for me.

The Wellington rally organising trust took a lead from Sue Windsor who demanded short punchy contributions from the speakers. Frank Macskasy's article in the Daily Blog on the following Monday (10th November) provides a brilliant pictorial and textual representation (2). My address was an abridged version of the Levin notes above. It is important to note the psychology of rallies. Sue Windsor's requirement that speakers keep it brief and punchy proved itself with the rally maintaining energy throughout - no one drifting away till the end!

TPP Action in the greater Wellington region had been collecting signature on petitions seeking that the six metropolitan Councils adopt our TPPA policy solution. Many names were added to those that Saturday. We informed the assembled that their email addresses would be extracted for ongoing email bulletins and alerts. As an example I use these to disseminate “TPP Roadie” reports and to forward bulletins from It’s Our Future Website (3) as they arrive. Reports from around the nation placed attendance in the realm of 10,000 in total at the 19 rallies that stretched from Invercargill to the Far North.

Rallies are about creating newsworthy public spectacles. It is disappointing that mainstream media gave scant acknowledgement to the many New Zealanders expressing concerns about this secretive imposition called the TPPA. Reading the supposedly independent Otago Daily Times (ODT) on Monday 10th November morning one would have no idea that 1,000 people marched on Saturday from the Otago University Dental School down George Street to the Octagon and held a rally for a couple of hours. This was typical and an indictment, as the ODT had journalists covering the rally. They later claimed that they didn't know about it. Is this lying by omission? The cone of silence is well maintained by the Fourth Estate. How do we penetrate this bias against important public interest stories whose focus is to question the societal and political-economic status quo?

Local Government Lobby In Wellington Region

I had been working in the Wellington region since late August. My focus became the Hutt, Upper Hutt, Kapiti and Porirua Councils. Wellington TPP Action continued to work with Cr. Sarah Free and the Wellington City Council (WCC) to achieve our policy object (Sarah became our TPPA champion in WCC). When would we achieve a breakthrough from our considerable endeavours? In the Hutt region we moved to organise a series of public meetings whose object was to share TPPA implications. We built on the format developed at the October meetings conducted at St John's in Wellington and King Lion Hall Upper Hutt.

We created posters and I pasted all over the Hutt region advertising three meetings at Station Village Lower Hutt on the 24th, Wainuiomata the 25th and Stokes Valley Uniting Church on the 26th November. As well as Antony Maddock and myself speaking at all venues we had: Valerie Morse (4) and Ariana Paretutanganui-Tamati who addressed the Station Village meeting and Bill Rosenberg delivered his “TPPA And Local Government” paper at the Wainuiomata meeting. Attendance was small at these events, however those present were supportive. We continue to build contacts.

TPPA Policy Solution Across The Land

Coincident to this, Wednesday 26th November saw Gisborne TPP Action's Tania Barbarich front the Gisborne District Council public forum asking that they endorse our TPPA policy (5). She is a representative of the Tairawhiti community. Similarly, a few weeks earlier, on the 6th November, local activist Robyn Gwynn made a representation to the public forum of the Napier District Council, just before the National Day of Action. He asked that they adopt our TPPA policy solution – we spread out and grow.

TPPA At Kapiti Coast District Council

This Council has been approached on a few occasions utilising a variety of mechanisms. One was by the locals in Otaki under an umbrella of Kapiti TPP Concern. They presented to a Council committee in October. This and several exchanges at the Council's regular public consultation forums in November failed to persuade them to make a considered stand. The Council explained its attitude, saying that it didn't have the resources to undertake a considered research project sufficient for Council staff to make a recommendation to Council. It was in their view a central Government issue; however they requested that Local Government NZ (LGNZ) address the TPPA.

Kapiti Council reflects a view from a few Councils we meet in this project. I sense it is not that they don't care, nor do I think it is really about Council resources. These are constrained relative to the tasks they are required to perform. I imagine in their inner self they welcome our approach, however do not want to appear anti-Government for obvious reasons. In what way do we progress at Kapiti? We decided to organise public meetings and advertised them by pasting notices inviting people to attend at Paekakariki on the 3rd, Otaki on the 9th and Paraparaumu on the 10th of December. These attracted more attendees than the Hutt Valley ones with Otaki filling the community meeting room with 50+ people. Each venue offered strong support from the community and from the Paekakariki one we gained a key to the Kapiti Council door. One of the Kapiti Councillors offered that she would sponsor a “notice of motion” (a formal process requiring five Councillors to support) to get our TPPA policy dealt with in that Council's formal agenda. This is yet to be done; however appears our best recourse, as we would have supportive Councillors working within the Council towards our objective.

Porirua City Council – Old Connections Surprise Delightfully

Porirua City Council had proved a conundrum in that we did not have or, rather know, of TPPA activists within its precinct. Seeing that I had plenty to occupy myself with elsewhere, I left Porirua Council alone awaiting inspiration or opportunity's open window. I've held a view for a while that we co-create the universal matrix with our thoughts. Thoughts are powerful especially when coupled with action. One of the Councillors at Porirua is Ken Douglas, former President of the Council of Trade Unions (CTU) (6). Ken had apparently attended the November 8th TPPA Rally and picked up our TPPA policy solution. Ken returned to Porirua with it, where he persuaded another seven Councillors of the merits of our cause. Ken's coup obtained eight of the 11 Councillor's signatures including Mayor Nick Leggett to the TPPA policy. A copy of this appeared in my email inbox in mid-December courtesy of Bill Rosenberg. We haven't yet had this position formalised as a Council decision. We will be making an approach in the near term to obtain that formal adoption. Thank you, Ken and Porirua Council.

Return Home And Where Is It?

Where is home for the TPP Roadie? It used to be in the Motueka Valley, however the people whose place I had dwelt in for the past three years needed someone to be there to assist when they wanted to travel as a family. I needed to vacate to allow another to fulfil that role. I returned home to pack my stuff into storage. A few friends have my disparate possessions which comprise a library and household sundries. I've rationalised and rid myself of furniture and large appliances. After catching up with a few friends, a New Year’s party and a bit of socialising I headed in early January for a month's sanctuary in Dunedin. An old saying – “home is where the heart is” – all of Aotearoa it appears at present.

Dunedin Sabbatical

In Dunedin I mostly read and pondered our campaign in the context of “what State do we desire to create?” Walks on the beach and communing with friends allowed the previous year's campaign to distil and be digested fully. One author I spent a lot of time with was William (Bill) Ball Sutch, economist and political mandarin from the mid-period of New Zealand's 20th century. Folks might be distracted by his later notoriety (7); however he provided me through his writings with an enlarged picture of Aotearoa New Zealand's political and economic history. I read his “Colony Or Nation?” and “The Quest For Security In New Zealand 1840 To 1966” and his evidence to the 1969-1972 Royal Commission into Social Security published as a book, “The Responsible Society”.

In these Sutch offers us a history of economic and development policies. The school of economics that influenced his thinking was then offered from Columbia University and called “institutional economics (8)”. This from Brian Easton (9): “Assuredly he was greatly influenced by Columbia University, which was the top US economics university in the interwar period. In those days the dominant US economics paradigm was ‘institutional economics’, with a policy implication of the social control of industry. (John Kenneth Galbraith is the most widely known modern institutionalist.) McClintock shows that Sutch was an institutionalist in this sense. There are two points to be made here. First, institutionalism is very different from today’s dominant economic paradigm neo-classical synthesis, or the more recent economic rationalism version. To understand Sutch one has to get inside the old paradigm, and not just assume that because Sutch was not trained as a modern neo-classical economist, he has nothing interesting to say. Second, institutionalism – like much US thought – was heavily influenced by German philosophy, the philosophy on which Marxism was based, so one would expect some apparent Marxist influences on Sutch’s thinking. And in this case, Marxism was not as independent of the rest of the social sciences in the 1930s, as it became after the Cold War began”.

The middle parts of Sutch's expanded book “The Quest For Security In New Zealand 1840 To 1966” reviews a number of areas of interest (his pronouncements on a full universal education is required reading). In chapters 14 (“The Home Front”) and 15 (“Shares In The Sacrifice”) he highlights the scope of the transformation of the New Zealand political economy to deal with World War 2 military provisioning, with 157,000 men overseas in September 1942. The Fraser government’s attempts to stabilise prices and labour costs are illustrative of the possible. Previously our manufacturing industry was undeveloped. The return to a National government in the 1960s altered the development focus setting to the old imperialist policy settings that favoured pastoralist and finance interests. From Bill Sutch we can see the historical trajectory.

The individuals who comprise these interests were, and continue to be, the descendants of those who had been the most ruthless or prosperous at the outset of the NZ colony, along with the owners from overseas who invest or otherwise affect politics in our realm.

Early Pakeha relied on North Island Maori and their ready acceptance, adoption and prosperity with introduced European notions of land productivity on their own lands. The Maori were quickly dispossessed when the balance of power swung to the European race in the period post Tiriti o Waitangi. The policy of confiscation led to the Land and Maori Wars - and through elegant desperation gave birth to Parihaka's non-violent protest. Ultimate destitution followed; another class, the Maori, was created, a whole race was added to the class known as the poor.

Another way to view history is as a process. We are part of an evolving process which has occasional jumps. Every transaction is a part of the process whether prostitution in King's Cross Sydney, the making of brass bowls for tourists in Kashmir, or making the latest superconducting machines in Seaview, Lower Hutt. Some have greater impact on the future - prototype superconducting motors allowing amazing power applications, the edges of the new energy civilisation? Irrespective of perceived economic value - we all add to the rich fabric of human experience - what it takes to keep the dream alive.

As was the case with the Maoris’ contact with European power, we can see a future where the awesomely organised and powerful appropriate the mechanics of public administration and meld it to their own ends. Or, alternately in easier terms: the co-option of governance to corporations’ desires and diktats. The early solution accepted by Maori with the colonial power was Tiriti o Waitangi. Enough of their leaders signed it to allow it to carry the weight of law today 175 years later. Despite its flagrant corruption by those who breached its intent, it survives to stand as a guide to the rights of man and sovereignty. In the Maori sense it is in the rights of the individual in the tribe and the centrality of their community of interest. For them the tribe is an entity which demands respect and consideration in social and political economy. This, interestingly, in New Zealand is recognised in law. Recently in law in settlement with Wanganui iwi their river was granted rights of a legal person. This affords a right to exist in its own right. This is our common right.

Maori understood the nature of the human as being nothing without a community in which to have relations, learn, grow and perhaps lead through flourishing. Established order offered stability, and providing liberal sufficiency; movement to allow development; and flexibility to meet changing exigencies. Their notion of enslavement by negation recognised this reality. Thus the Maori response to the onset of Pakeha ideas and technologies was to adopt, adapt and get on. Through their productivity they developed a communal agricultural and services economy which provided sufficient surplus to purchase from the outer world, offer commodity trade into it and feed the Pakeha populations in the early period of Aotearoa meets New Zealand history.

The later imperialist invasion affected the new black economy adversely and drove the Maori participants into the growing underclass. We are stratified and divided in many ways. Perhaps this is also a natural part of human process development. How can we interpret Trans Pacific Partnership? Is it the new Tiriti o Aotearoa-New Zealand with the 11 other states? Is it the relational basis we accept for commerce with the outer world? How is this decided? Does TPP by Cabinet decree define the real nature of the Aotearoa – New Zealand democracy? It is these questions that now arise as we contemplate our response to TPP.

War And Waitangi Day – Which Memes Define The Nation?

The fact we are now in the midst of WW100 is poignant, dripping with meaning and opportunity if grasped with good sense and feeling. We are working in the realm of memes and cultural identity. The 100th anniversary of Anzac Day precipitates a flood of emotion and searching for our cultural identity. My sabbatical in Dunedin provides reinforcement about this. I find here the war seems to carry a stronger feeling than Waitangi Day. I participated in the Dunedin Waitangi Day celebrations at the Community Centre. Many Maori and few Pakeha were present. Do we disdain our real heritage?

Timaru A Stop On The Way North

Timaru TPP Action was keen that I visit on my way north. It held a public meeting at the Caroline Bay Community Centre on Friday 13th February. A small group of supporters gathered to hear my report on the coming national day of action on March 7 and the investor-State dispute settlement (ISDS) provisions in the NZ Korea Free Trade Agreement (FTA) (10). This “agreement in principle” is problematic as it contains ISDS.

NZ Korea Free Trade Agreement

We are inconsistent in refusing ISDS in the TPPA and allowing it to be assented to in the Korean FTA. Accordingly It’s Our Future and TPP Action are mobilising to oppose this FTA as it comes before the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Select Committee. We in TPP Action oppose ISDS provisions as they sap the sovereign ability of our planet's governments to regulate adverse commercial activity. The closest example is the ISDS suit by Phillip Morris Tobacco vs Australia (11). This flies in the face of the planet's governments’ commitments under the World Health Organisation's (WHO) Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, another international treaty to which NZ is a party (12). This commitment motivates our Smokefree 2025 legislation which contains plain packaging of tobacco products; the same issue about which Big Tobacco is suing Australia. Our smokefree legislation was parked by John Key's government in early 2014, despite his saying in 2012 that we are not party to a FTA that would stop us moving forward on smokefree. We observe from this that our Government has compromised our public health by delaying this important initiative. Further, as the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control requires - our Government should be actively implementing smokefree to support the international effort. We in TPP Action take note of facts.

Bilateral Investment Treaties & ISDS

Professor Phillip Nel’s Otago University profile page has a link to his paper “The Rise And Fall Of Bilaterals”. This link is to the October 2014 revised paper The following extract is from the earlier version of this paper, which he delivered to a conference on 2nd December 2013. “When the journal International Organization published, in 2006, a special issue on the dissemination of neo-liberalism, bilateral investment treaties (BITs) were much in vogue and increasing rapidly in number. The scholarly consensus then was that BITs facilitated host competition for foreign direct investment (FDI), and that they did lead to an increase in FDI flows (some argued only marginally). Seven years down the track, interest in BITs is declining and states both from the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development camp (e.g. Australia) and from the Global South (Venezuela, South Africa, Bolivia, Pakistan) are turning their backs on them. Why? The purpose of this paper is to answer this question and to revisit the consensus of seven years ago. I argue that BITs are becoming unpopular due to their ‘sovereignty costs’ and the loss of confidence by FDI hosts in the international ‘private’ arbitration processes of BITs. But BITs are also becoming redundant, being replaced with regional plurilateral arrangements that seem to engender more confidence on the part of hosts. On a theoretical level, the rise and fall of BITs is a barometer of the fortunes of the Washington Consensus and the revival of ‘sovereignty thinking’ on the part of states”.  He concludes with a reference to the TPPA and says: “The fact that the negotiations in some of these mega-regional agreements are conducted behind closed doors, gives room for concern. Cave! Hic dragones” (which translates as: “Beware! Here be dragons”).

Many non-Government organisations have researched FTAs and the ISDS implications. The It’s Our Future (13) site has four such reports in its resources section. There is much available elsewhere through Googling ISDS. I've read two of these: “Mining For Profits”, this is critical to appreciate in the context of grassroots desires to stop deep sea oil and fracking, or other obnoxious activity; and “Profiting From Injustice” - a report on the investment arbitration industry and its workings under ISDS provisions. What does all this mean? We can find out a lot of what is being done in our name behind the cloak of secrecy. There is plenty of information and knowledge for discerning, intelligent publicly interested individuals to comprehend the seriousness of the implications of the TPPA and FTAs.

Christchurch TPP Action Lead On Anti-ISDS

Travelling on from Timaru, I stopped in Christchurch for a few days. TPP Action organised a public workshop Tuesday 17th February, at Canterbury University, to inform individuals on the ISDS implication of the NZ Korea FTA. This was attended by about 30 people who heard reports from Gen de Spa, our local star, and me. In association with Professor Jane Kelsey we had begun to develop key points for evidence inputs to any Select Committee scrutiny of the Korea FTA. Preparation is important in this game of thrones. It's Our Future will post alerts as to when this process opens – after the FTA is formally signed and tabled. It will send out a bulletin to the many subscribers - if you aren't one why not?

Whilst in Christchurch I assisted with painting signs and erecting them, promoting the coming march as part of the March 7 National Day of Action Against The TPPA. Christchurch TPP Action is possibly the TPP Action champion at this point in time. It has got the TPPA message onto our national television media through their antics at the Cricket World Cup opening ceremony (14) seen on the news on both TV1 and TV3. Christchurch's creation of the “smokefree cigarette packet” received similar media attention when they picketed the Prime Minister's opening of the Oxford Community Centre on Thursday 19th February. Christchurch TPP Action has its’ own Youtube channel where one can view some of their antics (15). And even more: Community Board member Joe Davies met with Gen de Spa and I earlier on the Tuesday of the ISDS workshop. He was promoting that his Hagley-Ferrymead Community Board adopt a position supporting the earlier Christchurch City Council decision to adopt our TPP policy solution. The Board met the next day. He informs us that the Board determined unanimously: “That the Hagley-Ferrymead Board decide to support the Council decision of 14 August, 2014 to adopt the TPPA Resolution for the Government's consideration”. Go Christchurch.

A Return To The Fray. Wellington, What's The Word – Does Maui Catch His Fish?

I returned to Wellington on the evening of Monday 23rd February. In this case it's good to be ale to pass on good news. Late in the evening of Wednesday 25th February Wellington City Council (WCC) had a debate about the TPPA. This was the moment we at TPP Action had been waiting for and the Council kept us on the edge of our seats as Councillors argued the issue back and forth. Finally, once the argument had lapsed the Mayor Celia Wade-Brown had to vote twice to get us over the line with the very close margin of 7-6. Yes, WCC adopted our TPPA policy solution. We've another arrow in our quiver – our movement marches on. TPP Action everywhere offers our congratulations to Wellington Councillors and encourages all local governments to get onboard.

National Day Of Action March 7

A huge effort was invested into this. We'll pick up the story in Watchdog 139.

Appeal “TPP Roadie”

Donations to this initiative to lobby local government with the TPPA policy can be made to the following bank account: NBS, account number 031354 0295461 016, reference “TPP Roadie”.

Greg Rzesniowiecki aka gregfullmoon resides at large, originally from the Motueka Valley. He has assumed varied roles in the past, both here, and across the ditch in his native Melbourne and Australia. He has come to call Aotearoa/New Zealand home. He can be contacted at


  1. Wikipedia explanation of Maui. his waka and fish:
  2. Frank Macskasy article 10/11/14. Daily Blog
  3. It's Our Future Bulletins sign on for email updates:
  4. Valerie Morse, anti-imperialism activist and columnist, in a variety of publications link to her page on Scoop:
  5. “TPPA Raises Lawsuit Concern If Locals Favoured”, Gisborne Herald 28/11/14:
  6. Ken Douglas previous CTU President and now Porirua City Councillor:
  7. Bill Sutch:  Watchdog 113, December 2006, “Speaking Ill Of The Dead: The Vicious Smear Campaign Against Bill Sutch & Jack Lewin”, Murray Horton,
  8. Institutional Economics:
  9. Brian Easton on Bill Sutch in 1998:
  10. New Zealand Korea FTA available in one or many PDFs at the MFAT Website. Chapter 10 Investment contains the specific ISDS provisions agreed by the NZ and Korean negotiators:
  11. Phillip Morris Tobacco vs Australia ISDS suit: and more generally:
  12. WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control:
  13. It's Our Future website ISDS resources link:
  14. Christchurch TPP Action at Cricket World Cup opening ceremony from their Youtube channel:
  15. Christchurch TPP Action Youtube channel:


It takes a lot of work to compile and write the material presented on these pages - if you value the information, please send a donation to the address below to help us continue the work.

Foreign Control Watchdog, P O Box 2258, Christchurch, New Zealand/Aotearoa.



Return to Watchdog 138 Index