An interesting course

February 15th, 2010 at 3:59 pm by David Farrar

A reader has alerted me to this fascinating law paper at Auckland University:

LAW495 Colonialism to Globalisation

In the late 15th century, imperialist Europe emerged intent on exploring and possessing the New World. Fast forward through five hundred years of colonialism, capitalism, slavery, industrialisation, genocide, and international law and greet the 21st century in all its paradoxical glory. We now live in a world characterised by political binaries: developed & underdeveloped; civilised & primitive; wealthy & poor; lawful & unlawful. Did international law play a part in introducing the new world to the old one and, more insidiously, in dispossessing the new one for the benefit of the old one?

I love how capitalism is inserted in there along with slavery and genocide.

Following a brief review of historical inequity, we will turn our attention to the colonial origins of international law and its role in facilitating the subordination of native inhabitants in favour of European settlers. Our examination will then take us through a series of case studies – human rights, intellectual property rights, military interventions, labour (de)regulation, and the world trading system – all of which will be considered primarily from the hushed perspectives of the Third World.

I may be wrong here but I suspect if you hand in an essay about how free trade based on an international legal framework is responsible for lifting tens of millions out of poverty, then you’re not going to get an A.

I may be wrong of course. Would love to hear from any current or former students who did the course.

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71 Responses to “An interesting course”

  1. Hurf Durf (2,860 comments) says:

    You think that’s bad? Geography 102 exam, “Geography of the Human Environment,” Semester 2 2009:

    How might sexuality be understood through a binary construction of a privileged Self and a marginalised Other?

    Using examples, explore how whiteness might be denaturalised.

    How might maps be geopolitically motivated?

    If I wanted to do sociology, I’d do sociology, FFS. And don’t get me started on that one either – I’ve sat in a few classes. The illogic and self-loathing bends your mind.

    Also lol 1234 WINNAR.

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  2. adamsmith1922 (890 comments) says:

    Is this area of law not the one Jane Kelsey ‘specialises’ in. She is a law professor at Auckland and per the University’s web-site

    “”Jane Kelsey is one of New Zealand’s best-known critical commentators on issues of globalisation, structural adjustment and decolonisation. She hastaught at the University of Auckland since 1979, specialising in socio-legal studies, criminology, policy and international economic regulation.

    She travels extensively talking on the New Zealand experiment and globalisation, especially the GATS, to a wide range of audiences and is an active member of a number of international coalitions of academics, trade unionists, NGOs and social movements working for social justice.

    Jane is the author of numerous books and articles on the neoliberal restructuring of New Zealand since 1984, including the best-selling ‘The New Zealand Experiment. A World Model for Structural Adjustment?’. Her latest book on globalisation, ‘Serving Whose Interests? The Political Economy of Trade in Services Agreements’, was published by Routledge in June 2008.””
    Kelsey is a tireless proponent of trade bad, capitalists evil.
    Need one say more?

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  3. scrubone (3,090 comments) says:

    They’re usually not so obviously biased in the course description – it’s once you get into the delivery that you discover that “discuss development x” means “use development x to bash capitalism”.

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  4. Fale Andrew Lesa (473 comments) says:

    Most legal papers I have encountered at law school within the last two years have been graded impartially on substance alone and the merit of your arguments rather than anything else.

    I haven’t taken this particular paper but I do believe that in my international relations paper for last year, our case studies focused on the progress, development and prosperity of countries like China, Japan, India and even Saudi Arabia (if you like) who are all instruments of success as a result of modern capitalism, globalization and international trade.
    That’s not to suggest that they are “perfect” instruments because social and economic barriers continue to exist, but the line between wealthy and poor within these nations is slowly beginning to decline.

    I’m sure law students (past and present) who have taken this particular paper can shed more light on this.

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  5. Manolo (13,517 comments) says:

    I can see the nefarious hand of one Jane Kelsey behind this course. She’s infamous for poisoning the minds of gullible university students, so her atrocious (and disgraceful) career continues.

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  6. Murray (8,842 comments) says:

    Pewwwww I can smell the agenda from here.

    Add that to my list of papers to avoid.

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  7. raay (7 comments) says:

    well the lecturer’s webpage says it all really:

    “Mohsen teaches and researches in the areas of Law and Society, International Trade Law, and Class Struggle. Currently, he is captivated by the writings of Antonio Gramsci, an Italian political philosopher of the early twentieth century, and Malcolm X, an American revolutionary and intellectual of the mid-twentieth century.”

    http://www.law.auckland.ac.nz/uoa/os-mohsen-al-attar

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  8. emmess (1,400 comments) says:

    A quick google of the lecturers name (Mohsen al-Attar) will let everyone know what they need to know

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  9. Paul Williams (877 comments) says:

    I’m guessing that this thread will disprove the wisdom of crowds doctrine and very quickly turn into ugliness.

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  10. Hurf Durf (2,860 comments) says:

    There’s more on Mr Al-Attar at New Zeal. Ryan Sproull the former Crappum editor and a bunch of other Auckland Uni excretees defend him, naturellement.

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  11. serge (108 comments) says:

    Jane Kelsey? ah, Karl Marx you mean, with a gender change.

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  12. Hurf Durf (2,860 comments) says:

    Oh, no, don’t worry everyone, it’s all necessarily unbiased. The good professor has no ulterior motives on his students. Nope. Not a bit.

    In this article then, we explicate, from conceptualization to practice, the theory behind and the use of an alternate pedagogy – derived from the work of Third World Approaches to International Law (TWAIL) scholars, of Paolo Freire, and of Ngugi wa Thiong’o – in the delivery of a course on international law in a mainstream Western law school. We argue that this approach has enabled students to familiarize themselves with critical legal theories, to experience a dialogic and democratic approach to teaching and learning, and to reflect on the place of justice in international law, a series of achievements unlikely within the conventional banking model. The authors do not claim to offer a definitive account on the teaching of international law. Emancipatory initiatives are neither exclusive nor exclusionary and we would not advocate the adoption of a single teaching method. Instead, what we put forward is both a theoretical and a practical examination of the application of a TWAIL-inspired approach to legal pedagogy. This pedagogy, we argue, is very effective in acquiring a nuanced understanding of international legal matters, developing a wide range of practical skills, and nurturing awareness of the harmful outcomes international law produces for the Third World. It is hoped, and only time will tell, that the understanding, skills, and awareness the students acquire will manifest outwardly into a deeper social consciousness and a meaningful desire to struggle for a just international legal order.

    i.e. international socialism and wealth redistribution. He backs that fat fuck Piggy Chavez and his special blend of expansionism too.

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  13. Swiftman the infidel (329 comments) says:

    I see Mohsen is a moslem git.

    Pity he doesn’t seem to give a rat’s backside about womens rights in Islam.

    Hey, it’s the capitalism that pays his salary that’s evil!

    Fuckin’ wanka boy.

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  14. alex Masterley (1,502 comments) says:

    I thought it was one of Jane Kelsey’s papers.
    She seems to be moderate beside this fellow.
    If I was looking to employ legal staff and saw this paper on a CV then unless the candidate failed the paper or at best passed with a c- no interview would be offered.

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  15. Swiftman the infidel (329 comments) says:

    Now that the internet has wrecked the global warming scammers we should now set our sights on the academic fraudsters at our universities.

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  16. vibenna (305 comments) says:

    Got an example of a course you admire, as a counter-weight and example of how it should be done?

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  17. pollywog (1,153 comments) says:

    WOW… it really is like KKKiwiblog round here sometimes

    nothing like a bit of cock slapping eh lads

    whats next…the soggy biscuit ?

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  18. Captain Neurotic (206 comments) says:

    DPF I suspect you are correct. Just like the Public Health Law Paper I did – where I tried to argue unreasonable restriction of individual rights versus the intrests of the community. Pretty much if you didn’t believe in higher tax, heavy regulation of private industry and equal distribution of wealth you got a C.

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  19. SBY (121 comments) says:

    “I’m guessing that this thread will disprove the wisdom of crowds doctrine and very quickly turn into ugliness.”

    Well on its way already.

    I don’t know this guy and would probably find myself in disagreement with much of the stuff he is teaching. On the other hand, I don’t see any particular harm in letting him teach. It is a university, after all. Students are meant to be exposed to different ideas and experiences. That is how critical thinking is learned.

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  20. expat (4,048 comments) says:

    Love it:

    Are the individual items in each lists in order of ‘minor evil’ to ‘baby slaying on an alter of basalt’ or the reverse?

    * colonialism, capitalism, slavery, industrialisation, genocide, and international law
    * human rights, intellectual property rights, military interventions, labour (de)regulation, and the world trading system

    Lets guess how many years in the private sector the course lecturer and dept. head have between them.

    My guess is 6 months.

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  21. expat (4,048 comments) says:

    BTW: Pollywog, nice troll avatar. Respect, no-one has outed you yet.

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  22. somewhatthoughtful (457 comments) says:

    sssh DPF, i can hear the dog whistle from here!

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  23. Chris2 (768 comments) says:

    Anyone else notice on his university web page that he lists his qualifications, including:

    “PhD (in progress) York University”
    http://www.law.auckland.ac.nz/uoa/os-mohsen-al-attar

    When I attended university you did not list your academic achievements until you actually completed them. This is shades of Mary-Anne Thompson.

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  24. jocko (111 comments) says:

    I once studied with an Indian.
    He used to claim Mercator World Maps were a gross British Imperialist plot.
    As ‘proof’, the UK (and NZ) are portrayed about the same size as India.
    He would have received at least an “A”

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  25. Rex Widerstrom (5,330 comments) says:

    SBY suggests:

    …That is how critical thinking is learned.

    I beg to differ. Encouraging critical thinking goes like this:

    Student: I think capitalism is the devil incarnate.
    Lecturer: Support that assertion with facts.

    The student does so and the lecturer does his or her best to challenge, first, the veracity of those facts and then the conclusions drawn by the student.

    Then he or she does exactly the same thing to the student who says “I think socialism is the devil incarnate”.

    Critical thinking is not encouraged by knowing the person who marks your papers and thus holds the key to your immediate future is a raving Marxist, red-in-tooth-and-claw capitalist, or anything else, and that he’ll grade poorly any paper not in tune with his biased worldview regardless of its merits. That encourages the diamteric opposite of critical thinking.

    The only room for someone who takes the view that there’s only one right answer is in the maths or science faculties where there (usually) is only one right answer.

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  26. Paul Williams (877 comments) says:

    I don’t know this guy and would probably find myself in disagreement with much of the stuff he is teaching. On the other hand, I don’t see any particular harm in letting him teach. It is a university, after all. Students are meant to be exposed to different ideas and experiences. That is how critical thinking is learned.

    Or perhaps it’d be better if all courses were taught from approved texts authored by Ann Rand et al.

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  27. virtualmark (1,522 comments) says:

    I was interested to know whether Harvard Law School has an equivalent course to this.

    Interestingly they kind of do … http://www.law.harvard.edu/academics/courses/2009-10/?id=7008 The course description reads “An integrated political economy now covers much of the globe; this course considers that historical development as a matter both carried out and contested through law. It focuses on the creation of monetary systems and financial institutions that cross national boundaries. The course seeks to explore those innovations as matters of governance, and tracks them through such historical dimensions as the British Empire, American state-building, and the 20th century architecture of the international order. The course aims to illuminate the power and limitations of the modern political economy, as well as the controversies that surround it.”

    But Professor Christine Desan at HLS obviously isn’t well enough educated to realise that Europe was imperialist, and had to possess the world, and that indigenous peoples’ experience of capitalism has just been a sordid ordeal of slavery and genocide (oddly, I am obviously in error in thinking that Maori today are much better off than the stone-age Maori of the 1830s).

    Perhaps Christine Desan’s class would offer much more insight if she came to UofA and took LAW495? Yeah right.

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  28. Sean (299 comments) says:

    As one who graduated with honours from Auckland law and who took a course with Kelsey, I can say that it did me no harm. Either you like or identify with this type of thinking; if not, then simply view it as useful in itself, as is much learning. At the very least, its helpful to know the ways of one’s enemies…

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  29. Angus (536 comments) says:

    This course is run by Auckland U’s latest Marxist whackjob Mohsen al Attar:

    Mohsen al Attar is the first lecturer in Islamic Law at the University of Auckland. He specialises in Law and Development, Islamic Law, Globalisation, International Trade Law and Intellectual Property Law.

    Mohsen al Attar is also a self proclaimed Marxist who sees education as a politicisizing process.

    What some people might term “brainwashing”.

    According to al Attar , education is a “political intervention”, which has “revolutionary potential”.

    Mohsen al Attar made these remarks in September 2009 at a public event in Auckland. The occasion was Emory Douglas and Mohsen al Attar: Education for Emancipation, a lecture/exhibition at the Gus Fisher Gallery, 74 Shortland Street.

    Exhibitor Emory Douglas was former Minister of Culture for the Marxist-Leninist/ Maoist leaning Black Panther Party in the USA

    According to al Attar;

    “Education is much more than the technical practice of learning but, in fact, a type of political intervention in which the student acquires greater understanding of the world they inhabit and the possibilities of transforming it via established and novel ways.

    Emory’s work has been inspirational to many including myself precisely because of the novelty of the images and the powerful message underpinning it.

    Every sketch was a political intervention of the highest degree. Education has this same revolutionary potential, a truism that is often lost in the commodity climate of tertiary institutions today.”

    http://newzeal.blogspot.com/2010/01/more-on-mohsen-al-attar-education-is.html

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  30. pollywog (1,153 comments) says:

    “BTW: Pollywog, nice troll avatar. Respect, no-one has outed you yet.”

    I have no idea what you’re talking about. I’m not gay if thats what you mean ?

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  31. Kimble (4,417 comments) says:

    Rex put it best.

    I would just add that in my personal encounters with leftist teachers, their willingnes to grade impartially is inversely related to how far left they are.

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  32. 3-coil (1,204 comments) says:

    Auckland uni was fairly labelled: “typical of a ‘provincial’ university” by US tertiary education experts after it failed to act on the slack standards and intellectual property theft by their Prof Witi Ihimaera.

    That they dish up this crap only reinforces AK uni’s reputation as a sub-standard tertiary institution, producing sub-standard work. Nobody should be surprised.

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  33. Kimble (4,417 comments) says:

    Witi’s a Maori, 3-coil, so that makes you a racist.

    Just letting you know.

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  34. CharlieBrown (927 comments) says:

    Its funny how dumb people tend to blame the undeveloped worlds poorness on globalization, capitalism or colonialism. The fact is just about every poor country was always poor (with the exception of Zimbabwe and soon to be South Africa). There is no doubt that european settlers commited terrible crimes, but there is also no doubt that countries that were settled by europeans and ruled by europeans (and America) have benefited greatly and are far better of than countries that weren’t. The biggest reason for this isn’t technology or military based, it is culture. The western culture evolved along with the strength and success of europe.

    Auckland uni isn’t the only uni offering biased courses. Just about the entire Waikato Law department is taught by pro-treaty, pro-labour, pro-separatism left wing wankers. The education system is becoming a very effective form of propoganda, where “progressive” beliefs are being subversively pushed out into society.

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  35. SBY (121 comments) says:

    Rex, do you have evidence the lecturer in question marks down students with different points of view to his own? Or are you just assuming that because the Kiwiblog commentariat have pictured him as a dangerous marxist nutjob you don’t need to enquire further?

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  36. Put it away (2,888 comments) says:

    This fool makes satire redundant.

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  37. expat (4,048 comments) says:

    To be fair the lecturer is probably just pandering to the politics of his dept. bosses – why else would you over egg the colonial oppressor shit that much???

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  38. black paul (124 comments) says:

    Hmm. A bunch of semi-literate slack-jawed knuckle-draggers attempting to critique an academic paper. You might be taken more seriously if only any of you were smart enough to study anything more challenging than sports and strippers.

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  39. francis (712 comments) says:

    You’d think that a law course would give a practitioner a hand up toward winning in litigation. This, following that thought, is perhaps not intended for those who actually intend to practice law but rather (and only) to use the degree to defend the value of their opinions.

    So it’s perhaps like “physics for poets” – a course I actually took for a couple of weeks just to see how the prof was going to get around the parts of math that aren’t subjective – and which was granted status at my university for fulfilling part of the science requirement one had to fulfil to get a BA.

    It wasn’t a very instructive course, of course – but it was fun.

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  40. Hurf Durf (2,860 comments) says:

    And here come the bedwetters. LEAVE MOHSEN ALONE!!!!! STOP INTERFERING!111

    Go on, paul. Tell us what you really think.

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  41. Rex Widerstrom (5,330 comments) says:

    SBY asks:

    Rex, do you have evidence the lecturer in question marks down students with different points of view to his own? Or are you just assuming that because the Kiwiblog commentariat have pictured him as a dangerous marxist nutjob you don’t need to enquire further?

    No and no, SBY. My comment was a general one, not specific to this lecturer, and was in response to your assertion that:

    It is a university, after all. Students are meant to be exposed to different ideas and experiences. That is how critical thinking is learned.

    I was pointing out that if your lecturer is so biased as to a partcular perspective that it leaks into something as mundane as his course summary, that’s not going to encourage critical thinking, it’s going to encourage Groupthink driven by the need to get a good grade.

    And that applies whether the lecturer expresses doey-eyed admiration for Ayn Rand or Karl Marx. I hope I’ve now made myself clear.

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  42. Bevan (3,965 comments) says:

    “BTW: Pollywog, nice troll avatar. Respect, no-one has outed you yet.”

    I have no idea what you’re talking about. I’m not gay if thats what you mean ?

    Outed as a troll, not a raving homo sexual.

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  43. Bevan (3,965 comments) says:

    Hmm. A bunch of semi-literate slack-jawed knuckle-draggers attempting to critique an academic paper. You might be taken more seriously if only any of you were smart enough to study anything more challenging than sports and strippers.

    Let me guess. You suck at rugby, and the stripper had you kicked out for groping her tits?

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  44. black paul (124 comments) says:

    Perfect, Bevan. Perfect.

    Neatly illustrating the depth of the Farrar brains trust.

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  45. expat (4,048 comments) says:

    Whereas ‘blackpaul’ is the work of an erudite academic of some standing amongst the liberal and socially progressive.

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  46. Put it away (2,888 comments) says:

    I give your trolling a D minus, black paul. To just basically repeat your initial troll ( of the fabulously original “you’re all dumb!” variety) in response to a withering comeback that takes you down on your own terms, is a feeble performance. Must try harder.

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  47. pollywog (1,153 comments) says:

    “BTW: Pollywog, nice troll avatar. Respect, no-one has outed you yet.”

    I have no idea what you’re talking about. I’m not gay if thats what you mean ?

    Outed as a troll, not a raving homo sexual…”

    closer to a grey vampire than a troll but still not on the money…

    http://k-punk.abstractdynamics.org/archives/011172.html

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  48. Letterman (184 comments) says:

    I had Jane Kelsey as a Law & Society Lecturer at Auckland University, and despite yawning gaps in our respective social and political views, I actually found Kelsey to be quite fair in terms of giving alternative opinions to her own a decent hearing. I even raised the issue of the Littlewood Treaty and an embedded NZ Constitution in an exam, and was still awarded an A grade.

    No-one has to be afraid of a socio-political point of view, provided they have sufficient information and facts to effectively counter an alternative perspective. Whether this alternative perspective is held by a Lecturer or a fellow student (in my opinion at least) is neither here nor there.

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  49. Jack5 (4,917 comments) says:

    Wonder if the Asian parents who finance their kids to Auckland Loonieversity are aware that radicals locked in extreme yesteryear, like Kelsey and Mohsen, are part of the education packages their savings buy?

    Even parents from China should flinch at this, especially at the university’s curriculum including an Islam-communism mishmash, and Gramsci, the Italian communist whose views are well out of synch with Beijing’s Red elite.

    Nor, I’m sure would these Asian parents be happy if they knew that the children they want to benefit from the best lessons of the West, may mingle with girly-men within the student body who defend as relevant political dinosaurs like Kelsey and Mohsen.

    Send a bright kid to NZ, get back a stirrer brain-washed with the failed political ideas of last century.

    Even Canterbury Uni’s kapihaka classes beat this.

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  50. ephemera (563 comments) says:

    “I love how capitalism is inserted in there along with slavery and genocide.”

    But wasn’t slavery something bourne out of 15th century capitalism?

    Just sayin’.

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  51. ephemera (563 comments) says:

    @jack5

    How is Gramsci out of sync with Beijing? I would have thought he provided them with the template they must use to contuinue with their full-spectrum governance.

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  52. ISeeRed (244 comments) says:

    ephemera: nope.

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  53. black paul (124 comments) says:

    Sorry Put it away but there’s really no reasonable response to the racist grunting and slobbering in this thread. None you’ll understand anyway.

    This little hive mind you’ve got going here can’t handle any sort of challenge to its victim mentality world view. This whole thread is just a fearful stream of “oh my god the foreigners are brainwashing our kids”. As if any of your kids are ever going to study law. As if any of you could raise a child without violating a restraining order.

    Bunch of shivering bitches, your only consolation the knowledge that you’ve found a filthy nest of like-minded impotent losers, rejects, and internet tough guys to comfort you through the darkness of your mid-life crisis.

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  54. Sapient (24 comments) says:

    Ephemera,

    Slavery was borne out of 15th century capitalism? What?

    I guess people just went back in time and inserted laws governing the keeping of slaves in most religious texts, including the bible. Anyway, it was not capitalism that made it wider in use; most of it was actually the approval of a certain religious institution…

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  55. ephemera (563 comments) says:

    @Sapient

    WHat you say does makes sens. I have a very superficial understanding of history, and want to learn more about this kind of thing. What I was trying to address, though, was DPF’s astonishment that capitalism would be bundled together with slavery and genocide.

    One can be a fan of 21st century capitalism and still acknowledge the economic drivers at play in the aforementioned issues.

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  56. Hurf Durf (2,860 comments) says:

    That’s right, you’re all raaaaaacists. black paul (I love the violation of basic punctuational rules by the way, very kitsch) has told us all. Obviously we’re all too thick to get our knuckles off the ground to even be able to spot a left-wing agitating indoctrinator from a klick away. Obviously our world view isn’t enlightened enough to spot the damage we do to native tribes with our evil consumerist ways. Shame on us! For shame! If only I were more enlightened! Please, paul, lead me from the darkness! Take me to Pubic Address, The Stranded and infinite Gween Party meetings to cleanse me of my ignorance!

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  57. Clint Heine (1,569 comments) says:

    Nice to see the usual (or is that unusual) left wingers in here try and justify these courses. Going to University is all about gaining knowledge so that one could better themselves and get a job in the real world….

    Look at some of the unwashed that attend such classes and you’ll see a collection of no-hopers who will spend a decade at Uni preparing for a career in welfarism, union reps or Labour/Green MPs.

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  58. ephemera (563 comments) says:

    @Hurf Durf

    “Shame on us! For shame! If only I were more enlightened! Please, paul, lead me from the darkness! ”

    Even if you were being sarcastic, you have made pauls point for him – Next time, rather than hinting at a feeling of intellectual inferiority, just say “Fuck off”.

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  59. RainbowGlobalWarming (295 comments) says:

    Blackpaul, what a nasty little kkk dogwhistle attempt. F for Fail & Fuckoff back to the standard.

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  60. Falafulu Fisi (2,177 comments) says:

    Oi, people, UofA is internationally recognized in engineering and science , so don’t label the whole of UofA as a farce, simply because one faculty/department is teaching dodgy courses.

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  61. MikeE (555 comments) says:

    Reminds me of an IB paper I took…

    that said, the lecturers were very impartial on that one, and did mark on the basis of merit/argument/logic, not viewpoints.

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  62. peterwn (3,215 comments) says:

    “I may be wrong here but I suspect if you hand in an essay about how free trade based on an international legal framework is responsible for lifting tens of millions out of poverty, then you’re not going to get an A.”

    Worse still, if you get up the lecturer’s nose too much then the Dean may not give you a positive reference to be admitted to the bar via a Law Society recommendation (the usual route). This means you have to spend a fortune to convince a High Court Judge that you should be admitted. Peter Zohrab knows all about this – AFAIK he still has not been admitted.

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  63. Scott (1,739 comments) says:

    Many years ago when I did social work at Massey University this kind of thinking was part of the course. The social work degree in my opinion was designed to radicalise students so that they would have the appropriate attitudes in the areas of race, homosexuality, and class warfare. Many of the lecturers were openly Marxist, including one lecturer who went on to become an MP before retiring from political life and going back to the aforesaid university to become Vice Chancellor.

    If you want to know where Helen Clark and her cronies got their ideas you need look no further. Helen Clark was radicalised at Auckland University. Unfortunately the ideas of the radicals have now become mainstream. Homosexuality after decades of effort from a relatively few but highly motivated group of queer activists is now enshrined in law as a human right. Judges for example now tend to have the radical view of race which sees all colonialism as bad and have a jaundiced view of the history of New Zealand as full of the most extreme forms of racism. Union leaders are of course still deeply imbibed in class warfare and the views of Communist radicals like Gramsci are widely believed.

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  64. ephemera (563 comments) says:

    @peterwn,

    They made an exception for Peter Zohrab, You’d be hard pressed to find anyone else from Victoria university who has experienced that fate.

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  65. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    ” love how capitalism is inserted in there along with slavery and genocide.”

    Where do you think all of the loony leftist who foul this blog get their doctrine from??

    If their heads weren’t filled with crap from commies such as Mohsen (proselytizers posing as lecturers) there would be a vacuum in its place.

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  66. Jack5 (4,917 comments) says:

    Ephemera in his 12.15am post defends a link between Mao and Gramsci, which entails a bizarre implication that this means today’s rich parents in China wouldn’t be fazed by sending their pride to Auckland, NZ, where they might be taught by communists.

    China’s economy is now capitalist, with the Chinese apparatchiks transformed into capitalists, with only some in the military lagging, and the peasants transformed into a vast reservoir of casual labour.

    The cropping up of “Gramsci” in the influences on Auckland university lecturers does raise an interesting point. This is what Wikipedia says of the Italian communist ideologue:

    Gramsci posits a strategic distinction, between a War of Position and a War of Manoeuvre. The war of position is intellectual, a culture war in which the anti-capitalist politicians (communist leaders sponsors, socialist scholars, and ideological subversives) seek to have the dominant voice in the mass media, other mass organisations, and the schools (and actively conduct ideological subversion).

    That may be why you have a prominent Trotskyist teaching journalism students at another Auckland tertiary institution, and why we have the drift to the Left in the NZ MSM, neglected by absentee foreign owners, or in the case of tabloid TV, by its main owner the state.

    Ephemera may have a point about similarities in the thought of Mao and Gramsci, in that they both developed independent Marxist lines.

    Regardless, what a gem for marketers of NZ education overseas lies in the Auckland lefty lecturers. Come to Auckland and study the Gramsci line (or the Trotsky line, or the general Marxist line) What next? Great Leap Forward agriculture at Lincoln and Massey?

    Surely not even a dinosaur communist surviving in NZ like a tuatara could believe the new middle-class parents of China, the country’s new bourgeoisie, want to send their children to be educated in a remote-land university where some lecturers are even mildly in synch with Mao. To increasing numbers, Mao is a monster who murdered tens of millions in the Great Leap Forward.

    Even if they did want a communist education for their kids, middle-class Chinese would send them to Cuba or Belarus, or find some backward institution in the Chinese hinterland.

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  67. Bob R (1,357 comments) says:

    Cultural marxism continues its march through the academy. It’s sad to see this anti-western brain washing being promoted at New Zealand’s best law school.

    The course will no doubt be highly popular with those looking for new ways to criticise & belittle european history.

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  68. RRM (9,668 comments) says:

    DPF: “I love how capitalism is inserted in there along with slavery and genocide.”

    What a dick. It is alongside industrialisation and International Law too. You assume this is meant as a list of “bad” (i.e. “not left”) things.

    DPF: “I may be wrong here but I suspect if you hand in an essay about how free trade based on an international legal framework is responsible for lifting tens of millions out of poverty, then you’re not going to get an A.”

    What a dick again.

    You should offer to lecture a course on political web-nuttery for them.

    “Blogosphere 101: How to be outspoken on topics you don’t understand, but assume you wouldn’t like.

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  69. Hurf Durf (2,860 comments) says:

    Don’t you have to repaint your toenails, epheminate? Off with you now.

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  70. Put it away (2,888 comments) says:

    black paul, still a D-minus for trolling, essentially repeating your “nya nya-nya nya-naaaaaaaa YOU’RE ALL DUMB !” approach and throwing in some ( very) sub-Dr Phil amateur psychology. You are not nuanced enough to pull off the “I’m writing stupid posts that are calling everyone else stupid , isn’t that brilliantly ironic trolling ?” approach. You are trying too hard make yourself look like a idiot and so your troll methodology is obvious. Must try harder.

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  71. ephemera (563 comments) says:

    @Jack5

    I didn’t defend a link – I pointed out that Chinese commies might be reading Gramsci too.

    I have done more than wikipedia’d Gramsci – I have read him as a primary text. Not because I have wanted to, mind, but because it was required reading on my university course – and I was studying Cinema!

    Gramsci was marxist at his core, so viewed the world with that lense. However, if you unpick his arguments, you can take a lot from what he was writing and incorporate it into your own way of seeing.

    For instance, I have read posts on this blog by people like Redbaiter, who discuss how liberal ideologies are infecting public institutions, etc. Gramsci was writing about ‘ruling elites’ (ie, capitalism), but his writing could equally apply to liberal ones too.

    And so to China – although, as you point out, China is run by capilalists now. I am sure whatever they beilieve is a mishmash of Mao and who knows what. Gramsci’s prime concern was ‘cultural hegemony’, which I think the Chinese elites have a very active interest in preserving. That’s why I didn’t think Gramsci would necessarily be out of sync with them.

    Hope that’s cleared it up, Jack5 :-)

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