Wednesday, January 30, 2013

DCD and the 'Sleeping giant' that is/was the Maori economy

But are the dogs running or sleeping?

Me and dogs.

I don't mind dogs. We got a Dalmatian last year, Lila, lovely dog, killed a massive rat in our lounge once.

And I use to fish the Tutaekuri River which ran a few minutes walk from our whare in Kauri Street, Taradale. Dogs can be kai.
looking upstream of Tutaekuri, towards the Otatara pa .

I expect to see at least two guard dogs in every truck yard I pass, like the yard on the corner of Vickerys and Washbourne Roads, back of Sockburn by the old airbase. One of the dogs there - they used Dobermans, Rottweilers, the occasional Alsatian- was three-legged. Dangerous work, if you can get it.

sunrise through the HotDip galvanising plant
the old burger bunker, a wreck before the quake...

In Capitalist korero there is the term running dogs of capitalism...which Wikipedia tells me is a "literal translation into English of the Chinese/Korean communist pejorative zǒu gǒu 走狗, meaning lackey or lapdog, an unprincipled person who helps or flatters other, more powerful and often evil people. It is derived from the eagerness with which a dog will respond when called by its owner, even for mere scraps.

I also know to Let sleeping dogs lie, remember the film? I was somewhat stunned by the synopsis:

 Following the break-up of his marriage caused by his wife's affair with another man named Bullen (Mune), "Smith" (Neill) arranges to live on the Coromandel peninsula on an island owned by a Maori tribe. Meanwhile, political tensions escalate as an oil embargo leaves the country in an energy crisis. Tensions boil over into a civil war and guerrilla activity. However, Smith enjoys his peaceful island life and has little interaction with the rest of society.

Well, we all know what happens to Smith. (Actually, I forgot, so I had to look it up.)

What we don't know is what's happening to the 'Sleeping giant' of NZ Inc that is the Maori Economy?

With so much riding on the dairy sector, it poaka-fisted attempts to control korero on its soil management strategies must. give. one. pause. to. think.

I recall Ingrid Collins, chair of Parae Whangara B5 which took out Te Ahuwhenua, saying we/they had reached the limits of intensification, and they're mainly sheep and beef.

Pity the lowlands.

i think this water is looking for the Heathcote...near Tower Junction...

Without wanting to oversimplify, the reason I'm posting on what was an obscure chemical (albeit one developed on the very campus from which this is posted...) is that Rod Oram touches on the risk to our Maori economy, or at least that chunk still on the land. DairyNZ and Fonterra, through supporting/contracting research on technological solutions to the environmental (and hence social and market contexts), are reaching those limits, both limits to the land, the water, their ecosystems, and to people, the hours they can work, the injuries they can carry.

We've seen the invisible hand reaching to the Pacific all those years ago. Now its is grasping, pummeling, clenching, all too desperate, and all too visible if you know where to look.

I think we are seeing the extremities of the logic of accumulating capital. Maori have seen the land squeezed from our hands, the blood wrung out of us as workers but still. it. goes. on.

So this latest corporate fuck up (and perhaps more in the arrogance of the political arm rather than the technocratic) is merely the latest incarnation of capital's logic. More people are aware, more focused questions can be asked, more scrutiny of the answers is possible.

Ain't the end. Ain't even the beginning of the end. But it might be the end of the beginning.

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Simon Lambert

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