A Newsletter for
The Kumara Vine
P.O.Box 408, Wellington, New Zealand
ISSN 01142097 - Issue No 9/89 25 September 1989
Toi te hapu, toi te iwi, toi te mana:
te mana wairua, te mana whenua, te mana tangata; te mana Maori.
Ka whawhai tonu ake! Ake! Ake!
E nga iwi o te motu, e nga hau e wha,
Tena koutou, tena koutou, tena koutou katoa.
The 1990 Commission has started an advertising programme to educate the public about the Treaty of Waitangi. The very first television advertisement features a Maori boy and a Pakeha boy playing together. It ends with both boys eating kaimoana at the beach, or very close to it. That close encounter with tikanga Maori sums up the whole attitude of the 1990 Commission, and it's advertising agency. Not very smart at all.
What is to be done?
There have been calls for a complete boycott of all 1990 commemorations. Of late these have come from the Waiariki and Bay of Plenty District Maori Councils, and from the Auckland District Maori Council Executive. However, a complete or even partial boycott is probably an unrealistic option, given the diversity of opinion in Maoridom, and the commitment that many have already made to 1990 projects.
Maoridom cannot realistically be expected to organise for such concerted action.
For my part, I have long considered calling for a boycott. I have considered calling for a more specific and easier protest target, such as the Commonwealth Games. I have spent a lot of time looking for other unexpected, unconventional, and creative ways of registering a protest. I have also wrestled with the contradiction of my own personal feelings on the matter, and my undeniable obligation to support my iwi in its 1990 project, which is the building and launching of a waka.
Looming large in my considerations is the seeming futility of trying to fight against a $30 million propaganda project, with so few disposable resources of our own. To try do so is akin to joining battle on ground of the enemy's choosing.
In searching for a position to hold on 1990, I turned my thoughts to Te Whiti O Rongomai and tried to imagine what he might have done in today's circumstances. I make no claims to enlightenment, but the process of seeking aid from the enlightened did help me to clarify the issues in my own mind.
Looking to the past does help to bring 1990 into its true perspective, for in reality it is but a fraction of time in our long struggle for freedom from oppression. Focusing on 1990 therefore restricts our vision, and limits our courses of action to the short term. But ours is a struggle which has been handed down to us from our tipuna, and which we must hand down to future generations. In that context, we really should not concentrate on a period of a few months, but look instead twenty years hence; and twenty generations more. Instead of limiting our vision to 1990 we should ignore it, and lift our eyes once more to our long term objectives.
The 1990 propaganda campaign is only a diversion; a mere shadow cast across our paths to entice us into pursuits of the Government's choosing. To chase the shadow will draw us into unprofitable and energy wasting action unrelated to our real kaupapa. To chase the shadow will force us to become reactionary rather than pro-active, and to lose the initiative. To chase the shadow will cause us to dance to someone else's tune.
1990 can not therefore be a major event in the Maori calendar. It is only an opportunity to be turned to advantage. So, whilst the international media turns its attention towards New Zealand and its commemorative propaganda, we need do no more than tell our own story of Aotearoa. That will require a degree of organisation but not great resources or noisy protest, for the international media will eagerly accept another more newsworthy story.
For myself, in 1990 I shall continue to tell my story in Te Putatara, I shall support the Ngati Kahungunu waka project, and I shall ignore the rest. A sort of a personal boycott.
"...you can muffle the drum, and you can loosen the strings of the lyre, but who shall command the skylark not to sing?"
- Kahlil Gibran
TE PUTATARA is published monthly by TE AUTE PUBLICATIONS, P.O.Box 408, Wellington, New Zealand.
Copyright: Ross Himona, 1989
All material appearing in TE PUTATARA is copyright. Contributions are welcomed. Letters to the tea boy are also welcomed.
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1990 .............................. 1
Fan Mail .......................... 3
Wellington Watch .................. 4
Wira Gardiner of the ITA .......... 8
The Freemasons Secrets: Part IV ... 9
Dispatches from the Dungeon Bar ...10
A Farewell to Dr Reedy & Mr Baker .10
Tena koe Ross,
Kei te reka nga hua o te kumara. Ara kei te mihi kia koe e tu pakari nei - e kaha nei ki te whakarapopoto i nga korero i nga kaupapa o te wa hei titiro hei wananga hei whiriwhiri ma tatou a hei katakata hoki!
All these relatively unknown Maori COGS workers chose to visit the Dungeon Bar recently. They figured that they would be updated on devolution and all that. If they didn't get an update they reckoned on getting a mention on the back page of Te Putatara.
But guess what? Nothing happened. Ross White was there. Bill Kaua in brief. But it was a real disappointment. Even worse nobody even noticed them. So they packed up and went to the Mongolian Restaurant in Courtenay Place. But one thing was strange the COGS CEO's camera went missing. The COGS workers reckon it was a security measure to ensure the Maori COGS workers didn't upset the Devolution plan.
And nobody gave them flowers either!!!
Thank you for publishing my letter to the editor. Have you forgotten that I asked for the address of the lady who called herself Mrs Jake? Until I find out who that woman was I have cancelled Jake's Friday night leave pass.
On another subject, have you heard why it is that the Ministry of Maori Affairs has difficulty recruiting Maori women executives. I know of a number of Maori women of high quality and qualification who refuse to apply for jobs at the Ministry. Something must be drastically wrong in that place. Mr Editor, instead of boring us with your interminable tales of Maori male politics and power grabbing, it's about time you wrote more about things which interest Maori women.
Jake and I still read your paper, but it could do with some improvement.
In the June edition you all read about the millions of dollars our beloved Bank of New Zealand gave away to all those Pakeha who decided not to pay it back. Then the Government guaranteed BNZ some cash if they needed it to get out of trouble. The other day I had a close look at the fees I pay to the BNZ for them to look after the measly loot I used to keep in their vault, until they took it all for fees. Now that I have no money in my accounts, they still charge me for looking after the money I don't have there. I think I must be paying back some of the money those Pakeha made away with! A colonial system eh. Pai kare, it's about time I found another bank. Isn't it about time we had one of our own?
A Round-up of Capital Events
Iwi Transition Agency
After months of indecision and incompetence the senior appointments in ITA have finally been made. They are:
Wira Gardiner General Manager
John Paki Asst Gen Manager
Joan Fleming Asst Gen Manager
Pita Paraone Tai Tokerau
Erima Henare Tamaki Makaurau
Robert Koroheke Waikato
Pouwhare Te Maipi Waiariki
Louis Moeau Eastern
Darcy Nicholas Western
Rino Tirikatene Te Waipounamu.
Te Putatara usually gives new appointees a few month's honeymoon before looking closely at their performances. In this case, the Editor knows the new General Manager far too well to be that kind. Sorry Wira old friend, no honeymoon for you; you're in the firing line right from the start.
So you'd better whip your team into shape as fast as you can, and one of the first things you'd better do is shut down the gravy train, and close all the little corruptions. I know that you're honest, but to keep me off your back you'll have to train your whole team to be honest; to start honest and to stay honest.
And I hope Wira, that you warn them against trying to usurp the mana and rangatiratanga of the iwi; the way some of the last lot did. The kaupapa of the ITA is service, not power.
Did Tai Tokerau Trust Board Really Withdraw From MACCESS?
Here's a strange one. It is said by those in the know that the Tai Tokerau Trust Board resolved (without much discussion) to withdraw from Maori ACCESS. But not MANA Enterprises! Then someone up there faxed that news to the Minister of Maori Affairs. Cyclone Koro is reported to have called the bluff, and said that was OK, but give up MANA Enterprises as well. It seems that Tai Tokerau MTB then changed it's mind. A bit of a weird strategy eh.
Wait a minute. Over the last year the Department of Maori Affair managed to grab control of a large part of Maori ACCESS from the Authorities by one means or another. If they had gained control of Tai Tokerau their strategy to defeat the MANA/MACCESS network would have taken a huge step forward. Makes you wonder doesn't it.
The kumara vine whispers that Kara Puketapu put up a proposal to have the national administration of Te Kohanga Reo contracted to Maori International. Apparently the Minister of Maori Affairs tossed it.
A report on the plot for the ITA. The plan was to amalgamate MANA Enterprises, Maori ACCESS and Vocational Training into the one fund before it was transferred to ITA. That would have made accountability very difficult to follow. A sort of a huge undefined putea for someone to play around with.
Another report says that Neville Baker missed out on the General Manager's job as far back as June. Wira Gardiner was then tapped on the shoulder, and was interviewed on 4 August. Sometime after that Kara offered to stay on as General Manager for a year, with Neville as his deputy. Sounds like the old foot-in-the-door strategy. Well Neville. You fought the hardest fight of your career but you fought it against yourself, and in the end you defeated yourself. After thirty two years of service your retirement is well earned. And those like yourself who are dedicated to serving the people don't really need status and power do they?
Ministry of Maori Affair
The kumara vine is starting to whisper about being unable to gain access to John Clarke, Chief Executive of the Ministry. They have been told that he does not meet with iwi groups and representatives, and that he does not intend to travel to their rohe to meet them. You have to korero with Rongo Wirepa and the iwi liaison staff instead. My friend Rongo is a very fine person, but it's not quite the same as seeing the boss eh.
The Rev Maori Marsden has a few things to say about the Ministry. He says that the decision to expand the Prime Minister's Department with funds from the Ministry of Maori Affairs budget shows how poorly served the Government is by this new Ministry.
Rev Marsden says: "The Ministry of Maori Affairs has not demonstrated that they have the nous or the intellectual capacity to advocate and to provide alternative Maori advice. The Prime Minister, Geoffrey Palmer would be well advised to develop a strong Maori policy facility in his revamped Prime Minister's Department. This will create the capacity for Maori concerns to be immediately relayed to someone who will actually act on them. Unfortunately this will not happen with the Ministry of Maori Affairs. In fact the vast majority of Maori people hardly even know they exist."
Maori Marsden on the NZ Maori Council
The good Reverend says:
"The Maori Council structure is part of a statute which is paternalistic and has failed Maori people. Government has to repeal the statute. To avoid this is to force Maori to maintain two systems of Maori organisation. It is inevitable that tribal rangatiratanga will collide with the NZ Maori Council structure. It is deplorable that the Minister of Maori Affairs is giving secret assurances to the Chairman of the Maori Council, Sir Graham Latimer that the Council will not be examined with a view to its reform. The Minister has to heed the voices of the people who he supposedly represents. A growing number of the voices are warning that the Maori Council system must be reformed. This can only be done by repealing the Maori Community Development Act 1962."
The NZ Maori Council has also been in the firing line from the Ngai Tahu Trust Board and the Tainui Trust Board over the allocation of the $1.5 million given to the NZ Maori Council for fisheries research and negotiations. Sir Graham Latimer said that the funds had been placed in a trust account, and that the remainder would be used for future litigation.
E hoa ma, the kumara vine tells me that the name of this trust was probably called "Maori International", and that the names of the appointed trustees are not quite known to the NZ Maori Council Executive. Hard case eh. I hear that none of the payments from this so-called "trust" have been formally authorised by the Executive. I also hear that most of the directors of Maori International don't know anything about it either.
Apparently about $0.75 million has been paid to the lawyers. The lawyers have always been the big winners eh, ever since the Pakeha created Pakeha title for the land. The Iwi and the Government have fought over the title for untold years, and the lawyers have walked away with the gold every time. And every time we fall for it.
$100,000 of the loot went to Ngai Tahu, $100,000 to Tainui, and $150,000 to Muriwhenua. The kumara vine (tino busy this month) reckons Maori International was paid the sum of $80,000 for "administration".
What I would like to know, purely for interest's sake of course, is how much interest has been earned off the $1.5 million, and where it is.
To it's credit, the NZ Maori Council Executive decided that the $500,000 given to the NZ Maori Council for forestry negotiations had better be put in trust with their solicitors, and that trustees would be formally appointed to control all expenditure. However, the busy kumara vine reports (yet again) that someone authorised some payments before the formal trust could be put in place. Apparently two of the first payments from the forestry fund were $20,000 to Tai Tokerau Maori Trust Board, and $37,000 to G.Latimer (expenses).
The Good Works of Sir Graham
Ae, Sir Graham has been in the van of a lot of the action in recent years, and has done a lot of good work for the people. That's why he has had a lot of expenses keeping up his mahi for the people. Fortunately he is well looked after. The NZ Maori Council pays him an honorarium of $20,000 on top of his travel and accommodation, and the Tai Tokerau Trust Board gives him another $20,000 honorarium. I hear the NZMC also loaned him $30,000 for his trip ki Ingarangi.
Pai kare, it's expensive work, this dedicated work for the people eh. Sir Graham is fortunate to have such generous and appreciative organisations to work for. You know, Sir Graham is so well known for his good works, that in 1987 his Tai Tokerau MANA Enterprises Committee gave him $10,000 for future expenses, in anticipation of some good work on behalf of MANA.
Otamatea Trust Board
Word from the grapevine is that the Department of Social Welfare is not very happy with the Otamatea Board. It seems that DSW loaned about $205,000 to them to buy the old Paparoa Hospital. Apparently DSW is not altogether satisfied that the building is being used for the purpose originally specified. We could hear more about this one.
The Fisheries Bill
The latest rewrite of the bill is another step in Geoffrey Palmer's secret programme to turn back the resurgence of the iwi. The proposal is to set up the Maori Fisheries Commission with four members nominated by the Minister of Maori Affairs, and three by the Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries. A company called Aotearoa Fisheries Ltd (controlled by the Commission) will be given $100 million worth of quota, and $10 million for setting up costs. The Minister of Fisheries (and his racist Ministry) have a lot of power over this proposed structure.
The iwi and hapu, who are the real owners of the fisheries, get nothing.
This deal could well have been worked out with the connivance of some of our own "brown colonials" of the old guard. It looks like another solution which places Maori resources in the hands of the unrepresentative and unwanted few, and shores up their illegitimate power over the people. It denies once again our rangatiratanga and mana Maori, and sets us up to stay under the boot of tauiwi.
A New MP for Eastern Maori?
I hear a very secret secret off the vine that a small group of kumara are starting to organise to get rid of Peter Tapsell MP.
It is said, behind closed doors, that he's not representing the iwi, but trying to push us along the old Pakeha assimilation route instead. They are considering, and will approach, two or three strong candidates who might be interested in standing as an independent iwi candidate, and who would properly represent te iwi Maori.
E hoa ma, Eastern Maori looks as though it could hot up over the next few months.
Our sources in Te Pi-hive confirm that Peter Tapsell has been a major obstacle to policies which concentrate on the revival of the iwi as the valid Maori structure. He fought hard against the policy outlined in "Te Urupare Rangapu" last year. He really is just another of the Brown Colonials, who try to promote pan-Maori (ie Pakeha) policies.
We are also reliably informed that Peter Tapsell was one who tried to have Kara Puketapu appointed to the Iwi Transition Agency as General Manager. That might explain how Kara came to be the only other candidate for the job, without being formally interviewed for it. Kara has now publicly stated his own opposition to the iwi, which would explain why he came very close to getting the nod from Cabinet.
A late report from our man at Te Pi-hive states that Peter Tapsell has Koro Wetere under pressure and is trying to unseat him as Minister of Maori Affairs.
A Word on the Brown Colonials
Our whanaunga Wi Kuki Kaa, well known for his theatrical yet devastatingly accurate turn of phrase, has labelled them "the brown-skinned eunuchs frolicking at the feet of the Great White Caesar."
The Manawatu/Rangitikei Committee
Remember the Maori ACCESS committee that didn't exist? The one that radical activist Winnie Te Pukeko Peters made a great fuss about last year.
Well, the Kurahaupo Waka Assn has successfully taken over as the iwi authority for the region, but there were many loose ends from the old administration. Bert Mackie of the Board of Maori Affairs has recently been in Palmerston North and has spent some time cleaning up the mess.
I hear he reduced a large deficit to manageable proportions.
Te Iwi O Wharekauri-Rekohu
The review team appointed by Government to study and report on the Chatham Islands has submitted it's final report. In spite of attempts by the Department of Infernal Affairs and its Minister to ignore Te Runanga O Wharekauri Rekohu, they have been recognised by the review team. It remains to be seen whether any good comes of the process.
Wira Gardiner of the Iwi Transition Agency
Wira Gardiner and I go back a long way. We met at the Royal Military College of Australia where we both trained to be army officers, way back in the dim dark ages - BV (Before Vietnam).
Many on the kumara vine, realising that we have known and worked with each other for nearly 27 years, have let me know that they expect me to say something about him, and that they will be reading my comments very closely, and very critically too.
E hoa ma, here goes. Just for you.
One day in 1963, Wira was out in the bush learning how to fight his way out of ambushes; just in case he ever went into politics, or applied for a job in ITA. For that particular exercise he was the machine gunner. The gunner travelled on the back of the troop truck standing up at the front, with his machine gun pointing forwards over the cab, ready to open up on any ambushers. He was in full battle kit with a steel helmet on his head. Hika ma, you take my word for it, he looked like a really fierce Ngati Awa/Ngati Pikiao/Te Whanau-A-Apanui warrior in those days (these days he looks like a fat cat in his flash suit eh). Those Australian instructors never knew what to expect!
Wira's job, if the truck was ambushed, was to open up with his machine gun and shoot up the ambushers while everyone else piled off the truck. The machine gunner gets to be the hero eh, last off the truck; if he's still alive to get off.
The truck was bowling along the road when sure enough it got caught in an ambush. You always do when you're training to get out of them eh. Wira must have been dreaming about a big feed of pork and puha back home, because the ambush sort of took him by surprise. I've always reckoned that he was asleep. I've seen him fall asleep in some hardcase places you know. True, e hoa ma. Even while he's been standing up!
The driver slammed on the brakes and the truck came to a screeching, sliding halt. Wira didn't though.
Wiiiiiiraaaaa! Over the front of the truck he went! Ka rere te manunui! Over the cab. Over the bonnet. Right over the front of the truck; still with the machine gun at the ready. It was such a graceful flight. But he spoilt it all and landed smack on top of his head in the middle of the road. Keraaash! Aue hika.
But wait. He rolled in the dust, leaped to his feet, and sprinted for cover. And in no time at all the machine gun was in action covering the others as they dived off the truck. What an act!
Wira didn't have a single scratch on him. Those Aussies reckoned he was lucky to escape with his life but I knew better eh. He was just lucky he landed on his head, because that's the hardest part of him! E hoa ma, you should have seen his tin hat. It was a real mangled mess. But it wasn't the hard road that scrunched it up; it was his hard head eh.
Now the point of this story is not that Wira Gardiner can fly like a bird in a tin hat. And it's not that he's hard-headed, or that he's good at getting out of ambushes; and it's not that he likes playing the hero.
The point of this story is that I reckon he'll do the job standing on his head.
Secrets of The Freemasons - Part IV
I know you're all asking "Why write about the Freemasons?" Because members of this secret network have their hands on many of the levers of power in New Zealand. And those who keep power unto themselves keep it from us, te iwi Maori.
For example, Sir Ron Trotter of the Business Roundtable was, until quite recently, the senior New Zealand Freemason (Grand Master). Sir Ken Meyer (father of Doug Meyer of the Roundtable) is a former Grand Master. Business is full of them.
They say that it is not possible to become Chief Justice of New Zealand unless both the Freemasons and the Catholic power hierarchy agree on the appointment. They actually share it between them. For a long time Catholics were forbidden from joining the Freemasons but that didn't stop them from collaborating in order to control the levers of power.
The appointment of Governors General, the highest office in the land, is said by some to be controlled by the same collaboration.
We have a report from a very reliable part of the grapevine that all of Muldoon's National Cabinet were Freemasons. Except for Muldoon himself! Apparently Sir Robert the Great was eventually pressured into joining. Some of that group use the Druids Lodge on Lambton Quay. Now, Jim Bolger is a Catholic, but he was in Muldoon's Cabinet, and he often uses masonic terms when he speaks: such as, "standing on all four squares". Only a mason uses that language.
The black and white squared floor of the foyer of Parliament is just like the floor of a Masonic temple. Was the Parliament designed and established by Freemasons? Who knows? By the way. Do you know what? The other night, as I walked into the Victoria Hotel (the one where the Dungeon Bar is), I noticed for the first time that the floor of the entrance is a masonic floor. True e hoa ma, black and white squares! Hika ma, I think I must be paranoid eh. Paranoid - that's a fancy word for porangi.
Many of the Muldoon Cabinet had strong links with the military, being former commissioned officers themselves. Well, the network of Freemasons is also strong in the military and the police, and it is said that high office is not possible unless one is a Freemason. Appointment to the Senior Executive Service and to Chief Executive in the State Sector is greatly enhanced by membership of the Freemasons. Indeed, my secret sources inside the Freemasons reckon that rarely is a male Chief Executive not a Freemason.
I suppose I should point out that Wira Gardiner is not a mason.
Now, the Freemasons claim that they are not a secret society, but just a society with secrets. If that is the case, I would like to know why members of the security and intelligence community used to be barred from joining the masons. There must have been a very good reason for that, don't you think?
Why write about the masons? Well, I think that we should all know as much as we can about our opposition, and the masons are an entrenched part of the tauiwi opposition.
In the next and final instalment of this series we shall look at the most gruesome of all their ceremonies.
Dispatches from the Dungeon Bar
E hoa ma, the last time I visited the Dungeon, something seemed to be wrong but I couldn't quite put my finger on it. You know how you get that feeling of uneasiness or incompleteness, and you don't know why? It was like that.
Apart from that, the old Dungeon, haven for spies of all persuasions, was swinging along as usual on a Friday night. There was Ross "Mr Black" White and Dave Kingi; and Hamu Mitchell, Matt Rei, John Paki and Wira Gardiner. John Paki was looking for Jake, but Fat Man said he hadn't seen Jake since Jake's wife Reriko got suspicious about whether he was meeting another woman at the Dungeon. Someone told me that one of those two had been appointed to a job in ITA but they didn't know whether it was Jake or the Fat Man. So all we know is that one of them is in ITA eh.
That one, whoever his name is, said that they had just got this letter from the Ministry of Maori Affairs. You should have heard this other fullah going on about it, saying what a terrible paper it was. Then the Fat Man (or was it Jake), he said don't be cruel. It was a whole page, and the signature was in the right place too. What more can we expect.
E hoa ma, it was a real friendly crowd down there. A couple of Neville Baker's spies bought me a drink, then a couple of Kara Puketapu's spies bought me a drink. They were trying to get me drunk so I would spill the beans, but I only drink orange eh. Then a couple of my own spies bought me a drink by mistake. It gets so confusing sometimes eh.
Suddenly I worked out what was wrong, and why I felt strange when I arrived. Mere Pohatu wasn't there! You all think I'm porangi don't you?
A Farewell to Dr Tamati Reedy,
Mr Neville Baker,
Former Deputy Secretary
Department of Maori Affairs