Only a Pawn

Don’t worry New Zealand, there will ever be a market for your exports in China. More demand than you can possibly supply. That’s the message from Xi Jinping, President of China, as he finishes his first official visit to Aotearoa as President.

That’s in assurance the freshly signed Australia-China free trade agreement will not push New Zealand out of contention with its biggest trading partner. That we ever feared it might is a clue to NZs deep cynicism in world affairs, a product of Britain cutting the antipodes adrift last century. And some still want the union jack, such a symbol of divorce and imperial pigheadedness, to remain the colonizer of the top left corner of our flag.

This kind of stunted conservatism is summed up in the line by George Eliot; “whatever is, is bad, and any change is likely to be worse.” I hope that kind of grumpy non-thinking doesn’t require further refutation.

On the matter of China, relations are now spoken of in terms of a strategic partnership, and involves John Key swallowing his criticisms of China’s human rights record, if indeed he has any. On political reform  Key dodged with the tired old adage “it’s a matter for the Chinese people.” He went on to say that New Zealand will support China in whatever form their government takes. Key has now become both a pimp for, and a prostitute of China. At least they’re paying in full, and it appears Xi Jinping is particularly glad to see New Zealand on the UN Security Council for 2015-16.

New Zealand is looking like a pawn again, albeit one that has more recently been harder to deploy. Let’s see how the game plays out.

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