Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

US Ambassador stifles free speech


US Ambassador stifles free speech

At lunchtime yesterday, the US Ambassador walked out of a public meeting, denying the people of New Zealand a rare opportunity to communicate directly to a senior representative of the United States government.

Peace Action Wellington had taken over the running of the meeting, to facilitate a more balanced event than the planned US propaganda speech. 'To listen to him and have some polite exchange is an insult to freedom of speech in this context.' said Peace Action Wellington member Don Franks.

The meeting began with a minute of silence for the thousands of innocent civilians murdered by the United States in Iraq and Afghanistan, followed by a minute of rage against the murderers. Then, after an introduction from a Peace Action Wellington representative, the floor was opened to the public. Unfortunately, Ambassador Swindells chose to depart the meeting rather than listen to the concerns and questions of the attendees.

The Ambassador's own free speech was not impeded in the least, as the text of his planned presentation was made freely available online and widely reported in the mainstream press. As expected, it contained nothing surprising, confirming that a free exchange of views would have been far more valuable. However, the current US government only approves of "free speech" when they are the ones doing the speaking.

The current administration of the US insulates itself from the voices of the people to an astonishing degree. "President" Bush has admitted that he does not read the news, and relies exclusively on briefings from his own staff.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Scoop 3.0: How You Can Help Scoop’s Evolution

Entering into its third decade of operation, the Scoop news ecosystem is set to undergo another phase of transformation and evolution.

We have big plans for 2018 as we look to expand our public interest journalism coverage, upgrade our publishing infrastructure and offer even more valuable business tools to commercial users of Scoop. More>>

 
 

Speaking Of Transport: Public Engagement On Wellington Scenarios

“Our work on possible solutions for Wellington’s transport future is ongoing, but has progressed to the stage where we’re ready to share our ideas with the public and seek their feedback to help guide our next steps...” More>>

ALSO:

Parental Leave: National's Time-Sharing Change Fails

National has proposed a change to the Parental Leave and Employment Protection Amendment Bill that would allow both parents to take paid parental leave at the same time, if that is what suits them best. More>>

ALSO:

Train Free Thursday: Workers Strike To Defend Terms Of Employment

"They signed up to these conditions a year ago when they got the contract for Wellington's rail services. Now they're trying to increase profits by squeezing frontline workers." More>>

ALSO:

Seclusion: Ombudsman Emphasises Importance Of Monitoring

Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero says that while there have been changes to the Education (Update) Amendment Act 2017 to prohibit the use of seclusion, the report is an important reminder of the importance of regular monitoring of schools. More>>

ALSO:

United Future History: "All Good Things Must End"

'We’re extremely proud of what we’ve achieved over the past 15 years, working alongside the government of the day, both National and Labour.' Mr Light told members on Monday. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Outcome, And The Hobbit Law

Somehow the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal has come lurching back from the dead – and as predicted in this column last week, the member countries gathered in Vietnam have announced a deal in broad principle, shunted aside until a later date the stuff on which they don’t agree, and declared victory. More>>

Agreeing To Differ: Greens Maintain Opposition To TPPA
“The Green Party has long opposed the TPPA. The new proposed deal, which came out of the weekend’s talks, still contains key ISDS concessions to corporations that put our democracy at risk, so our position remains the same,” said Green Party trade spokesperson Golriz Ghahraman. More>>

ALSO:

Monitoring Report: A New Chapter For Children’s Rights In New Zealand?

The Children’s Commissioner is calling on the country to embrace children’s rights to ensure their overall well-being. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election