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Werewolf Edition #34 : Mighty Foolish & Muddied Waters

Werewolf Edition #34 – Mighty Foolish & Muddied Waters

From Werewolf Editor Gordon Campbell

Enter the Wolf!

Hi and welcome to the 34th issue of Werewolf, in which we consider why and how the government’s sell down of state assets has gone so wrong , so comprehensively. In our cover story we review the problems of water rights that have postponed the Mighty River sale, the slump in aluminium prices likely to affect Meridian and the slump in coal prices that is causing revenue problems and job cutbacks at Solid Energy. On top of all that, we set out in detail the argument as to why it would actually be cheaper and more responsible to simply borrow the $6 billion that the government is expecting to get from the asset share sales.

In a related piece Alison McCulloch examines the contents and implications of the recent Waitangi Tribunal report on water rights , and indicts the government for its lack of good faith in the negotiations. From London, Rory MacKinnon analyses the legacy of the London Olympics , and shows how the fallout from the binge spending on the Olympics is already impacting on many of the community and health goals that the Olympics were supposed to celebrate. In another feature, we also call for a more mature attitude to our friends across the Tasman , and wonder whether its time to call a halt to the tiresome sport of Aussie baiting. Alison McCulloch returns to report on a recent Supreme Court ruling on abortion access that retains the status quo - and an outdated abortion law with which neither side of the abortion debate is happy. From Damascus we reprint excerpts from the blogged diary of Rita, a young Syrian activist , who casts a critical eye on the image and actions of the Free Syrian Army.

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In the arts, Philip Matthews highlights some of significant features of the recent Sight and Sound poll of greatest films , before offering his own list of contenders. One reason the Sight and Sound list so intimidating is that you’re not simply picking your own ten favourites : you’re choosing for posterity, for what you think history regards as being film’s greatest achievements at this point in time. It also seems to be high time for control freak anxiety…which could be a good reason why Vertigo now tops the S&S list, not that Citizen Kane was exactly a barrel of laughs, either. In this issue we also note two significant milestones - the centenary of the birth of Woody Guthrie one hand, while in our music column The Complicatist we celebrate 50 years of Jamaican independence and the island’s musical creativity. In his satire column, Lyndon Hood takes a satirical look at the 19th century approach our government is taking to child poverty ….while in Cartoon Alley, Mat Tait and Mike Brown present the final instalment of their epic 19th century adventure The Princess and the Whaler , which can now be read in its entirety in our cartoon section.

Thanks to Lyndon Hood and Alastair Thompson for helping me post this issue online. Werewolf is a thank you to Scoop readers and intended as an outlet for local writers and artists. If you want to be involved, contact me at

Gordon Campbell

The contents of this edition are:


Mighty Foolish

Does anyone still think the share sales in state energy assets are a good idea?
by Gordon Campbell

Muddied Waters

The Government has to deal with Māori claims over water. It could start by behaving more like a Treaty Partner, and showing a little good faith.
by Alison McCulloch

Syria Diary

The Free Syrian Army – How To Lose Support And Alienate People In No Time
by Rita from Syria

Abortion in the Dock

The Supreme Court’s recent upholding of the status quo on abortion access doesn’t fix the problems our outdated abortion laws continue to create
by Alison McCulloch

The Dizzying Heights

This year, Vertigo finally replaced Citizen Kane as the best film ever made. If you can believe film critics, that is.
by Phillip Matthews

Woody Guthrie at 100

From revolutionary poet, to icon of American virtue…
by Gordon Campbell

Hating Australians Is Boring

Isn’t it time we gave up bitching about the neighbours?
by Gordon Campbell


London Calling: After The Gold, Hush

In the wake of the London Olympics, the legacy is a good deal less than bright and glittering
by Rory MacKinnon

From the Hood : Poor Show

Please, sir, can I have the implementation of a number of already-identified measures that have been shown internationally to mitigate poverty and benefit the wider economy?
by Lyndon Hood

The Complicatist : Music Gonna Shock You Like Electric

Celebrating Jamaica, and 50 years of independence
by Gordon Campbell

Cartoon Alley : Mat Tait & Mike Brown

Mat Tait is a South Island based cartoonist and illustrator. Mike Brown lives in Wellington and is currently writing a PhD thesis on New Zealand vernacular musics.
by Mike Brown & Mat Tait


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