Make an ACT billboard

June 21, 2005

Capitalising on the recent National billboard editing craze, free market nutters ACT have given visitors to their website the opportunity to create their own billboards.

Here’s my effort (it’s too big to fit on here, and it looks crap when resized small).

Visit the ACT website to make your own, and be sure to send it off to Rodney for his enjoyment.

Political Compass

June 19, 2005

Being somewhat bored and procrastinating making a new website for SNAP!, I decided that I would take the Political Compass test again, seeing as my opinions have changed a little since I last took it in October.

The results weren’t too surprising – my Economic Left/Right stayed at exactly the same score, -8.88. My Social Libertarian/Authoritarian moved even further towards the extreme (didn’t think that was possible!), going from the old -8.62 down to a new score of -10.00, meaning that according to the test, I am as socially libertarian as it is possible to go. Interesting.

Anyway, that was rather pointless. Sorry for wasting your time.

National Front chooses colours over whites!

June 16, 2005

This is a short article I wrote earlier today for SNAP!, a weekly anarchist A3 broadsheet that goes up around Wellington.

A recent mass-protest by the neo-nazi National Front outside the Chinese consulate sent shivers down the spine of anti-racism activists as the entire Auckland cell of the National Front managed to muster 2 people, 2 New Zealand flags and a thermos of weak coffee to help them
in their call for Chinese people to stay in China.

The protest also saw the unleashing of the National Front’s secret weapon – flour and paint-bombs in what a local SNAP! field reporter called “their most pathetic move yet”. The political advisor to the National Front, Sid Wilson, admitted the NF’s dirty secret of using
coloured paint, rather than white. Neo-Nazis all over the country were reportedly outraged at the National Front’s seeming abandonment of their pro-white stance, with many leaving the Front in protest.

SNAP! looks forward to more hilarious outings from the last remnants of a pathetic movement in its death throes.

Action in Israel to commemorate 38 years of occupation

June 13, 2005

One of the many actions taken on the 4th of June in Israel to commemorate 38 years of Israeli occupation was this rather amusing one, done in the area of Ariel, one of the largest settlements in the West Bank. Photos courtesy of Israel Indymedia.

One of the most disruptive direct action campaigns in the world

June 6, 2005

One of the most effective direct action campaigns in the world is taking place as we speak, and those who are organising it say they have barely scratched the surface of what they are planning to do. This campaign is not, however, coming from anarchists, communists or even liberals, but from the far-right, the ultranationalists and religious nationalists in Israel.

Protesters against Ariel Sharon’s “disengagement plan”, in which Israel would evacuate all settlements and military bases from the Gaza Strip, have managed to systematically disrupt every facet of life in the country. They have managed to neutralise the vast majority of the left, while simultaneously stopping everyday Israelis from living their lives in ways that rival the effectiveness of the early months of the 2nd Intifada.

Men (and it is almost exclusively men) as young as 16 have conducted a targeted campaign – one day, Israelis will wake up to find that the major highways and inner city roads all over the country are all blocked by burning tires or masses of protesters; the next day civil servants will go to work only to find all the doors in their building have had the locks glued.

At the same time, the majority of the Israeli left – which should be declaring the “disengagement plan” for what it is, a sneaky backhanded method by which Israel hopes to get rid of it’s most problematic territory while increasing it’s vice-like grip on more and more of the West Bank, thereby negating any chance for a just peace settlement at any stage in the future – feel they are forced into defending the “disengagement plan” as a small help to the 1 million Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip, in order to fight against the anti-disengagement protesters who have succeeded overwhelmingly in shifting the terms of the debate and framing it with their own twisted logic.

The anti-disengagement protesters reach is so wide, that the Israeli government even felt they had to ban a recent emmisary from the Dutch government from handing out giveaways in the traditional Dutch colour of orange, the colour adopted by anti-disengagement protesters, in fear of the protesters claiming sympathy from the Dutch government.

One might think that this disruptiveness would see the majority of the Israeli public, who by all polls conducted by every major media outlet support evacuating Gaza, come out strongly against the anti-disengagement protesters and their actions. However, the opposite has been the case. Many in Israel who support leaving Gaza support it not because they feel it is right, but because they feel it is neccessary. They support it not because they think it will give the Palestinians living there greater self-determination, but because they think it will save the lives of Israeli soldiers and civilians. The immense passion with which the anti-disengagement protesters go about their activities has seen a massive outpouring of sympathy from everyday Israelis, many of whom claim the evacuation of Israeli Jews from Gaza is “too big a sacrifice to make”.

The anti-disengagement protesters are unlikely to succeed in their ultimate goal. Unless a lone-wolf tries to blow up the mosques on the Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif, which would have the potential to start a new world war (and their have been serious rumours of attempts to do this), Ariel Sharon has the political power and support to push through his “disengagement plan”. However, the protesters have shown that with numbers and extreme dedication, real results are not only possible, but likely easier than many of us thought.

Life, or something like it. Plus bonus Nazis!

June 4, 2005

Sorry the posting has been a bit sporadic lately. I’ve been a bit busy, a bit lazy and a bit overwhelmed with life in general, so the posting hasn’t been up to my normal frequency (or quality).

This weekend, however, I have moved back into my Dad’s place for a few days in order to look after Latte, our cat, while my Dad goes away for business. And, seeing as as of this morning I only had $6 to my name, this means that half went on my bus from town to Island Bay (where my Dad lives), and the other half will go on my bus back into town on Monday. So, while I’m stuck here in the Bay, expect at least a couple more posts.

Politics wise, there’s so much going on in both New Zealand and Israel at the moment, it’s almost impossible to pick any one specific thing to talk about. My life, however, has it’s way of forcing itself so deep into one issue that I manage to ignore (for a short time, at least) all other matters. For the last month or so, that issue has been the genuine delight of combatting the lovely neo-Nazis in Aotearoa.

Speaking of which, this is a timely moment to welcome those neo-Nazis who are currently reading this blog – I know you frequently come here, although I can’t work out why, seeing as you never post comments. Special hellos go to my old “mates”, Jason Molloy, Nic Miller (how was court on Monday, buddy?) and Ben Weerheym (managed to find out any more details for Redwatch, Benny Boy?).

Now, recently, if you’ve been following the news (for instance, by reading the Sunday Star Times, Dominion Post, NZ Herald, The Press or the Waikato Times), you would have heard that the lovely Kyle Chapman has resigned as the National Director of the National Front. What a tragedy! Now, Kyle claimed that his reason for quitting was because parents were refusing to let their children play with his son at kindergarten. If this is true, I think it’s a sad state of affairs indeed. However, not everyone seems to believe him…I wonder why?

Mr Chapman says the resignation was forced after his son was shunned by other children’s parents at kindergarten. He claimed his family was being persecuted for its beliefs.

Is this some kind of publicity stunt? Or just a ploy to attract the sympathy vote? Whatever, it just doesn’t ring true.

That little gem comes from the Waikato Times editorial page, and I must say, I wholeheartedly agree.

Kyle, however, is sticking to his story, and going further! He has laid the blame squarely at the feet of one Matthew “Darp” Henderson, a Sydney based anti-racism campaigner who is one of the founders of Fight Dem Back, a combined Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand anti-racism resource site. In the spirit of full disclosure, I feel I must state that I am also one of the founders of this website, and am also the North Island representative for it. Kyle stated the following on internet neo-Nazi forum Stormfront, in a topic about his resignation.

As I will not stoop to the level of freaks like DARP. Who has no morals or values. I will not make a persons family suffer for their actions.

Kyle, in addition to a number of other New Zealand and Australian neo-Nazis, seems to think that Darp somehow found out what kindergarten his son attends, found out the details of the other parents at that kindergarten and then contacted them, telling them not to let their kids play with Kyle’s kid. This is plainly ridiculous.

As for the real reasons behind Kyle’s resignation, I would offer two suggestions.

The first is the fact that he failed. Miserably. After briefly calling for civil war in New Zealand”, Kyle found that the NF had been promised $10,000 worth of election funding from the Electoral Commission on the condition that they register as a political party. And so Kyle went and apologised to the older Nazis in the NF for his previously publicly militant stance, and promised them that he would ensure they reached 500 members. Several self-aggrandising (and likely completely made-up) stories soon appeared from Kyle, claiming he’d signed up entire factories to the National Front (in the word of the Tui ads, yeah right), and that they would make it to 500 with plenty of time to spare. Then, suddenly, it all got a bit quiet. While publicly they weren’t saying anything, it turned out that they’d run out of time and finally realised that not only did they not make 500 members, but they didn’t even get halfway! In fact, the National Front had considerably less than 200 members when push came to shove! Kyle put all his eggs in one basket, and they all came crashing down. Oh, the shame!

The second reason that Kyle quit is that he knew that things were never going to change. Not only did they not make the 500 members this election, but they never would in the future. Consistant media stories about scandals in the National Front have come out – their pathetic showing on October 23rd in Wellington; the National Front Skinheads group and the Nazi salute photos; the hilarious Ground Training Club and its lemons and gravel army routines; Troy Cullinane, their Hamilton rep, getting charged with defacing a Maori carving; Nic Miller (former Wellington rep) arrested and charged with assaulting 3 Somali youths and the Explicit NF links to Blood & Honour NZ (openly Nazi skinhead group) and a “white power only” concert in Wellington all made the news to varying degrees, and that is just a sample. Kyle realised that the vast majority of New Zealanders opposed his group and what they stand for. In the meantime, Kyle was struggling to pay child support to all the mothers of his children, and he couldn’t get a job. He tried to become a bouncer only to have public complaints see him never get passed a trial period, and he couldn’t exactly go back to his old career, social work, with what he did last time still in public memory (in the 1990’s, Kyle worked for a Christchurch City Council funded group called the New Way Trust, which served to rehabilitate skinheads from their racist views and enable integration into wider society. That is, until it turned out Kyle was putting out a Nazi skinhead magazine at the time, and giving it to all his clients!)

Poor Kyle. I might feel sorry for him, if he didn’t believe that I don’t deserve to live…


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