Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Anti-Capitalists launch campaign in Wellington

Issued: The Spark 9 June 2002
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Sam Richards and Paul Saba
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The Anti-Capitalist Alliance (ACA) launched its campaign in Wellington on Queens Birthday weekend with stalls, street meetings, and a public gathering – the beginning of what promises to be an election campaign with a difference. Rather than make pledges to run capitalism better, the Anti-Capitalists took the opportunity to speak up and expose some home truths about the system and why it is time to start thinking about a revolutionary alternative.

First off, the Anti-Capitalists held a stall and open-air meeting at Porirua fleamarket at 7am on Saturday 1 June. ACA speakers pointed out the treacherous role of the Labour Party over its long history. They showed, with examples, how Labour Party leaders have always served the capitalist class and that it has been a long time since Labour even pretended to be a workers’ party. Other topics raised by ACA speakers at Porirua included facts about poverty in New Zealand and around the world, the phoney democracy of parliament and the need for real change. Hundreds of leaflets were given out and quite a number of people bought literature. A street meeting and stall followed in the city centre at midday where people listened, took leaflets, held discussions and many people stopped to buy radical literature.

On Sunday a public meeting in town had speakers on New Zealand and international topics. Philip Ferguson, from ’revolution’, spoke on the political and economic situation in New Zealand today, the demise of social democracy, the worsening conditions of the working class and the need for workers’ expectations to be lifted from the present low horizons. Daphna Whitmore, from the Workers’ Party, spoke about imperialism today, its main economic features, its inherent weaknesses and the development of revolutionary renewal.

Mayamir, a Nepalese woman, gave a moving account of the situation in Nepal and terror campaign being waged by the government. She outlined the development of the revolution which has spread across the countryside and has mass support. The extreme poverty and intense repression imposed by the state was contrasted with the growing revolutionary movement. Mayamir appealed to New Zealanders not to be taken in by the official propaganda coming out of Nepal. She told of how one of her brothers had been murdered by the state forces and another brother thrown in jail. Hundreds of ordinary people are being slaughtered and imprisoned by the Nepalese Government.

Sarah Helm, a unionist and activist who has recently returned from a seven-week exposure in the Philippines where she worked with the militant trade union movement the KMU, gave a riveting talk about the situation in the Philippines. Much like in Nepal, the masses are turning in increasing numbers to revolution while the state carries out repression and terror tactics.

A planning day of core ACA activists and a stall at Victoria University capped off a very full campaign launch in Wellington. Around a dozen new people signed up to join the Anti-Capitalists in Wellington and supporters gave financial donations to the campaign during the weekend’s events.