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Danielle McLaughlin misses on the Brazil election and ‘corruption’

The Editor, The Sunday Star Times,  Auckland,  08 January, 2019

NOT FOR PUBLICATION

Attn: Danielle McLaughlin

Dear Editor:

Danielle McLaughlin’s look at ‘populism’ (30 December) repeats a careless misinterpretation of the Brazilian election. The Workers Party was not accused of corruption in the sense of money corruption.  There was no evidence, or even any clear accusation, of individuals of the Workers Party benefiting financially.   By contrast the opposition (victorious) party had several prominent members in court defending such money corruption charges.  So you have it precisely backwards.  Very careless of you.  Might you look to clarify this in your column?

The kind of ‘corruption’ which the opposition was referring to is similar to references by Donald Trump who you so frequently discredit. So there is an inconsistency there in your characterization of ‘corruption’.   The kind of ‘corruption’ which Trump and Bolsonaro are referring to is the use of public money for public projects; they have similar ideas of what public money should be used for, with less tax on the rich.  This has traditionally been viewed as a political contest.  But to the desperate right wing, which knows their ideology is dead in a world searching for sustainability, it has become a pseudo-religious contest of existential threat, hence they grasp the term ‘corruption’ for themselves.

Sincerely,

Richard Keller

 

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‘Wellington First’ and ‘Save Our Parks’

The Editor,  The Cook Strait News,  Wellington

20 December, 2018

Dear Editor:

Steve Behrendt (CSN 13/12) understandably does “not understand why almost every decision made regarding buses worsens service” after observing the Airport Flyer’s stop has been move 125 meters further away from the baggage dropoff.  But it’s worse than that in general regarding attempts to move from cars toward public transport. Read the rest of this entry »


Donald Trump’s ‘natural instinct for science’

The Editor,  The Herald,  Auckland

25 October, 2018

Dear Editor:

Responding to the latest IPCC upgrade of the need for action US President Trump has been quoted as saying that he has a ‘natural instinct for science’ in relation to climate change and asserts that scientists are too biased to be trusted.  Say, what? Read the rest of this entry »


Climate change denial expressed so well by Trump

The Editor,  The Listener,  Auckland

25 October, 2018

Dear Editor:

It’s easy from the perspective of this country to complain about the fierce denial mentality of Donald Trump on climate change. Read the rest of this entry »


Labour government roots centered in the Cold War and their Neo-liberalism

The Editor,  The Sunday Star Times,  Auckland

11 October, 2018

Dear Editor:

The nature of this government’s reluctance to get on with upgrading the remuneration of teachers and nurses, to name but two, which had stagnated under the previous government is revealed more by their plan to spend an extra $Bln or so on an attack warplane than its current reaction to the surplus in the national books revealed by Treasury. Read the rest of this entry »


Letter to PM Arden on the P-8A warplane

17 October, 2018

Jacinda Ardern,  Prime Minister

Parliament Buildings,  Wellington

Hello Ms Ardern:

Spending an extra $1B+ on a warplane (Boeing P-8A) while claiming there is not enough money for necessary pay increases for nurses and teachers, to name but two, is not a good look for a Labour government.  Read the rest of this entry »


Widespread surreptitious election interference?

The Editor,  The Listener,  Auckland

01 August, 2018

Dear Editor:

There’s a lot of talk about Russian interference (or Trump collaboration with Russia) in the 2016 USA Presidential election but little said about interference in elections elsewhere in the world.   Read the rest of this entry »