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Finalists Named For The Roger Award

Finalists Named For The Roger Award

For The Worst Transnational Corporation In New Zealand In 2002

The US and its allies (including little old New Zealand) are currently reverting to a very old form of “globalisation”, namely that enforced at the point of a gun. Starting with Afghanistan, and in preparations for Iraq, it is aiming to reshape the world into something more amenable to its wishes, and more profitable for its biggest of Big Businesses.

Globalisation simply means the increasing domination of the global economy by transnational corporations (TNCs), whether achieved at gunpoint or bloodlessly. Nowhere is this more true than in New Zealand, where they exercise an even greater influence in the economy, despite our having a “Centre-Left” govern-ment. Little or nothing has been done to change the policies of the past 18 years.

The two Christchurch-based groups which organise the annual Roger Award say that TNCs are the real “government” of New Zealand; we asked the public to nominate the worst of 2002, and now the finalists are off to the judges.

The six finalists are: Tranz Rail; Novartis; Carter Holt Harvey; Shell; Telecom and Sky City.

The criteria for judging are by assessing the transnational that has the most negative impact in New Zealand in each or all of the following fields: unemployment, monop-oly, profiteering, abuse of workers/conditions, political interference/running an ideo-logical crusade, environmental damage, cultural imperialism, impact on tangata whenua, impact on women, health and safety of workers and the public.

The judges are: Sukhi Turner, Mayor of Dunedin; Dr Ranginui Walker, Emeritus Professor at Auckland University, Prue Hyman, academic and feminist, of Victoria University; and John Minto, National Chairperson of QPEC (Quality Public Educa-tion Coalition) and community activist . The winner(s) will be announced in Auck-land, in April.

From politicians of all stripes, “experts” and the media (itself owned by a handful of transnational corporations) the public is constantly bombarded with the corporate agenda. Namely, that what is Good For Big Business is Good For New Zealand. We say that it ain’t necessarily so. The Roger Award holds an unflattering mirror up to the ugly side of Big Business and exposes the lie that unfettered corporate power is the best - and only - way. The Roger Award is part of our challenge to the “Centre-Left” Government - are you going to do anything to control and roll back the power of our real, unelected government, the transnational corporations?

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