Eyebrows raised as Simon Bridges appears to sing from China's songbook during a visit that included a meeting with one of the Communist Party's most highly ranked members in charge of all legal enforcement

Eyebrows raised as Simon Bridges appears to sing from China's songbook during a visit that included a meeting with one of the Communist Party's most highly ranked members in charge of all legal enforcement

National Party Leader Simon Bridges has returned from his trip to China proud to have signalled his commitment to strengthening his relationship with New Zealand’s largest trading partner.

Yet questions have been raised over whether the Chinese Government may have used Bridges for purposes beyond furthering trade ties.

During the trip, Bridges, National’s Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Gerry Brownlee and National MP Jian Yang met with one of the most powerful people in the Communist Party of China - Guo Shengkun.

Guo is one of 25 people with a seat on the Central Politburo, which oversees the Party.

He is also the Secretary of the Political and Legal Affairs Commission, which oversees all of China’s legal enforcement authorities, including the country's police, intelligence agencies and courts.

Interest.co.nz understands that in general diplomatic practice, Guo isn't the person to meet foreign opposition delegations. 

Guo was formerly the Minister of Public Security.

A National spokesperson told interest.co.nz the meeting was “one of a number of official meetings which was offered to us by the host government in association with MFAT [New Zealand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade]”.

So, the Chinese Administration wanted one of its most powerful figures, who oversees the country’s domestic surveillance and will be instrumental in the handling of pro-democracy Hong Kong protests, to meet with New Zealand’s Opposition Leader.

It wouldn’t be unreasonable to ask why.

Could a lower level official with expertise in trade, or perhaps the Pacific or Belt and Road not have done the trick?

Maybe the National Party is well connected and held in high esteem by the Chinese Government.

But the language Bridges used in an interview he did with the Chinese state-controlled television network, CGTN, raised eyebrows among New Zealand/China observers and indicated there may’ve been more to it.

Bridges toes the Chinese line

The director of the New Zealand Contemporary China Research Centre based at Victoria University of Wellington, Jason Young, observed Bridges repeating the narrative that we see in Chinese domestic politics.

Young noted Bridges put a strong emphasis on the role of the “Communist Party of China” rather than the “country”.

He recognised it isn’t unusual for politicians to make efforts to connect with those they’re trying to appeal to, but pointed out that the language Bridges used didn’t feel very “New Zealand” in terms of the way we talk about ourselves and China.

For example, asked how he valued the role of the Communist Party of China in leading the country’s development, Bridges credited the Party for driving the strong relationship New Zealand shared with China.

“New Zealand has enjoyed a very strong relationship with the CPC. We’ve felt the privilege of being able to have many firsts with your party and with your country,” he said.

“Whether it’s been as a developed country developing free market status, the first free trade agreement, accession to the World Bank, the joining up to the Asian Investment Bank or indeed joining up to the Belt and Road Initiative.

“These things have been very good between our countries and of course have been driven by the CPC.”

Asked about “global instability” on the rise and the fact “some countries” are pursuing protectionism, Bridges went so far as to naming the US - the Chinese enemy New Zealand is also juggling relations with.   

“We stand to gain and do well out of multilateralism; out of the rule of law, out of mutual cooperation,” Bridges said.

“A very powerful example of this right now is the WTO [World Trade Organisation], of which China and of course New Zealand is a member of.

“Now we have a situation where come December, certainly early next year, the WTO will not be able to function because the US is not allowing new judges to be appointed. This is not right and is not in New Zealand’s interests.”

Asked for his view on the “illegal” and “violent” pro-democracy Hong Kong protestors, Bridges said: “We understand and accept China’s sovereignty in Hong Kong.

“We simply want to see the peaceful resolution of what is happening in Hong Kong. I think the recent step around the extradition bill is very positive.”

Bridges made no mention of human rights abuses in the video, which was edited.

Questioned by New Zealand media on Tuesday over these issues, Bridges responded: “Of course we disagree with them on human rights, of course we’ll push for rule of law, of course we don’t like what’s happening in Hong Kong and want a peaceful resolution.

“But to run this sort of woke line, that some of you love so much on Twitter, that somehow means we shouldn’t be visiting and we shouldn’t be having a relationship with a superpower that we trade more with than any other country in the world, I think is pretty irresponsible.”

Experts critical

University of Canterbury professor and China researcher, Anne-Marie Brady, tweeted:

Brady went on to explain in another tweet:

The Hong Kong-based Asia editor of the Financial Times, Jamil Anderlini, questioned Yang’s presence on the trip.

Yang made headlines in 2017 when Newsroom revealed he taught English to students in China so they could monitor communications and collect information, and had attracted the interest of our Security Intelligence Service.

Yang didn’t mention in his CV a decade he spent in the People's Liberation Army-Air Force Engineering College or the Luoyang language institute run by China's equivalent of the United States National Security Agency. That agency, the Third Department, conducts spying activities for China.

Anderlini tweeted:  

Meanwhile the aspect of the situation that the director of the Centre of Strategic Studies at Victoria University, David Capie, commented on was Bridges appearing to diverge from the bipartisan approach politicians in New Zealand have traditionally taken to foreign affairs:  

University of Otago professor Robert Patman wasn't as cynical about Bridges' comments. 

He acknowledged Bridges said things his hosts wanted to hear, but wasn't sure about the extent to which this was driven by China. 

Patman said the New Zealand/China relationship had evolved in recent years as China had an increased consciousness of its growing economic and military power.

Trade Minister David Parker hadn't watched the interview when asked for comment on Tuesday afternoon. 

Is New Zealand being played?

We don't know for certain why the Chinese Administration wanted Guo and Bridges to meet.

What we do know is that Guo is much more powerful than Bridges.

And the same visit saw Bridges - who is from a Five Eyes country - rebuke the US and talk about China in an exceptionally China-centric way. Bridges sounded like he was narrating talking points given to him.

What message does this send to the Chinese diaspora around the world about Guo’s influence?

These sorts of visits are about public perception as much as they are about relationship-building.

It’s hard to see how the trip benefited Bridges and New Zealand more broadly, as we try to figure out how to navigate waters made stormy by China and the US thrashing it out for dominance.

Rather it calls into question the price of politicking and the advice provided to MPs who represent New Zealand on the world stage.

The show of strength signalled by the Chinese Administration via Bridges may well be much louder than the signal Bridges sent that New Zealand is open for business.

We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

We welcome your comments below. If you are not already registered, please register to comment.

Remember we welcome robust, respectful and insightful debate. We don't welcome abusive or defamatory comments and will de-register those repeatedly making such comments. Our current comment policy is here.

108 Comments

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36
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Somebody’s shoring up some donations...

17
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God - these donations would be tiny compared to the contribution they have made to our housing market the last 10 years - which has been keeping the National Party voting block very happy indeed! (but of course this didn't actually happen, and if it did, it was an occasion worthy of celebration)

29
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He is truly embarrassing.

45
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Lay down with dogs you rise with fleas.
He also said small countries get nowhere doing right thing. National and morals? Yep an oxymoron

33
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He sold himself out in that interview.. like a school kid waiting for a lolly

You would think the Chinese would know how to avoid catching fleas.

in this case, they are the fleas..

39
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As a serving member of the NZDF hes the type of leader that you hope you never have in a crisis.

Jacinda will get the job done.. proven track record, delivers everytime. Good luck with that wet bus ticket.

A crisis involving whom?

10
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Funny part about that is it could be a conflict in the South China Sea! With Simon (National Communist Party NZ) at the helm, it might be hard to agree to which side we're actually on!

I doubt conflict of that type is possible in the developing cold war being waged by the US against Russia and China. It's nuclear or nothing as Putin has pointed out a number of times in the recent past. New Zealand has absolutely no role to play in that scenario. Furthermore, the US air force is increasingly paralysed by the installation of Russian air defence systems and both China and Russia can launch hypersonic missiles (nuclear or otherwise) at any capital ships threatening China's declared ocean territory. Once again, Mr Bridges will have no role in any decision making process if such a crisis ever evolves.

way off topic in what i meant in a crisis. I was thinking more earthquakes etc... The world ends if we have a proper conflict between these three countries.

That's why I asked.

It would put our trade vs 5 Eyes position in a rather fragile balance. China for trade or US for historical meaning?

No really

One alliance deals with our whole way of life, our freedoms and our rights to choose (democracy).

The other alliance involves buying and selling some consumables from a country with a system that goes against everything most kiwis believe in.

No brainer

America Is One-Dollar-One-Vote, Not Really One-Person-One Vote.

The only comprehensive and scientific study which has ever been done of whether the U.S. is a democracy or instead a dictatorship, was published in 2014. It studied the period during 1981 through 2002, and it found that, “In the United States, our findings indicate, the majority does not rule — at least not in the causal sense of actually determining policy outcomes.”

The Civil War Now in America

America is controlled only by its wealthiest, and they are solidly in control of both political Parties. However, now that they are in control, they are fighting bitterly amongst one-another. They are on two sides. Concerning foreign policies, and domestic policies, Republican Party billionaires hate especially Iran, and especially all progressivism. By contrast, concerning foreign policies, and domestic policies, Democratic Party billionaires hate especially Russia, and accept some progressivism. (They need to do the latter so that they can be considered to be liberals and thus tolerated or even admired by Democratic Party voters.

So we go it alone then. Tough road, but probably the right one

30
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Bridges is desperate for publicity, and miscalculated again on the impact this will have with the voters National have left. Most Chinese over here left China to rid themselves of a one party system. It might be one of his last junkits.

As from Brownlee, he would have done better going to Japan for Sumo wrestling. He would have done better than that, than the Christchurch earthquake aftermath he was so inept with. One last junkit for him too, then back to woodwork teaching.

17
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yes, my concern is not one particular trading partner, but all of them that remove $20 Billion profit per annum, from the NZ Investment Account.

NZ is getting smashed, for over 30 years since Asset Sales begun.

This is not trade, its stealth, owning companies in another country and creating vertical integration of the supply chain so all the profits end up offshore.

Incompetence and business and politicians perhaps being grafted by smooth talking overseas businessmen.

Stand up for your country, before its too late.

$1 in needs to be matched by $1 out, that is a long term trade and investment strategy.

Childs play really. Bridges, Jacinda, Treasury, Reserve Bank, can you cope with that level of economic thinking ?

Key , Shipley, Clarke, Bolger, Lange (R Douglas) have all failed NZ on this crucial level..

Of course David Parker has just been there too and sang praise about some ridiculous southern belt and road.
Its all very very scary.
Who to vote for at the next election????

Its easy to decide who not to vote for...

China Communist Party (CCP) in the past 40 years has been the most competent party in the whole world and of the entire human history.

Period.

Most ppl in the west have been brain-washed daily by the very very biased western media, and seldom anyone can reverse the damage and think independently and critically.

There are two increasing trends nowadays along with the increase in two way travels -- Chinese going the West and Westerners going to China.

1. Chinese travelling and living the West started to truly appreciate and respect how competent the CCP has been, understand that how western style political system would be a disaster to China, and being confident than ever that Chinese's way of development has been very successful.

2. Westerns travelling and living in China started to open their eyes and reverse the damage done by the biased western media, and recognise that CCP has done such a great and difficult job to make China such a beautiful place and safest country in the world.

34
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Ha ha ha ha

15
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Ha ha ha, Yes Xingmowang laoshi is a master of irony. The CCP has been the "most competent party in the whole world and of the entire human history" at killing it's own people.

12
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Even worse; killing their own people and then selling their body organs for profit! Here's the proof: BBC China's Organ Transplants Tourism and Transparency https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/w3csxyl4

As in killing about 120,000,000;now that's competence!!
And still celebrating the architect of this "competence" (or should we call it common prudence?)

House of cards X - hows those fruit prices going in your belovered home?

15
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Its not so much what China has done which worries people, it is what they are going to do next that sends chills through the spine...

20
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Simon, is that you?

24
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I see our resident CCP comment bot is pushing the party narrative again.

David, can't you ban the bot ?

13
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Freedom of speech - lets show X that he can say what he likes here in NZ - we don't censor or make people disappear like his belovered homeland.

At the expense of some lives. But who cares about that, right?

*snore*

Just change your screen name to xi jinping already lol

Think Mao Zedong Thought, think Mao Zedong Thought and repeat, or die.

10
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So Hong Kong is fake news Xing? The name of the country is the "PEOPLES Republic of China, there are numerous references to serving the will of the PEOPLE across many areas of Chinese culture, BUT Hong Kong demonstrates that this is patently NOT true. The PEOPLE do not have a say in China, and in fact the will of the PEOPLE is SUPPRESSED, often brutally.

While we may have to play nice, what you are spouting stretches the bounds of credibility too far.

Yeah, treat your citizens like mushrooms, keep them in the dark and feed them horsesh*t

I wouldn't put it as the most competent party, but it is definitely in the top 5. Others include Singapore, possibly Kenya, Dubai and maybe a couple of others. But it's all about how you measure progress. Pure economics, China is almost certainly at the top. But then again it had the most people and resources, so getting to the top could almost be expected, given reasonably competent leadership and market reforms. Social transformation? China is still mired in numerous issues. Environmental protection? China is near enough to last.

The yardstick of "what is progress" depends completely on your viewpoint. Remember most Western countries have been developed for a century or more. For most of us Westerners, we measure progress very differently and would probably point to the Scandinavian countries as those that have made the most progress (socially/environmentally/life quality, remember this would be based on how the already wealthy view change). Hence you have most commentators disagreeing with you.

If you were to take an objective stance and rate countries on performance though, I still think you are right and China comes out close to top. The fact it has pulled literally hundreds of millions of people out of abject poverty and into middle class is the biggest win. Yes, it still has problems, but many of the things others here point to would have happened in lots of places around the world in the past 50 years. They aren't limited to just China. The organ trade, for instance, has been happening in a lot of places. China is just one jurisdiction, so it seems like it is happening more there, but remember it is almost 20% of the entire world population, pretty much the population of all Western countries. In South America (part of the West), organ trade is a huge underground business... and don't forget that the Chinese organ trade ended up with most organs going where? To the US! Why don't the same commentators get upset about it in countries they are closer to?

And note xingmowang states "in the past 40 years", so is excluding the cultural purge and many of Mao's mistakes.

The things that makes the CCP great are:
It's generally a meritocracy (little princelings creeping in however needs to change)
The best rise to the top and are awarded with positions of greater power, which they execute with vigour. This uses greed and power as positive affectors of change
It thinks long term because it expects to always be in power
It still fears it's populous. Social harmony is the CCPs number one goal

The things that make the CCP horrible are:
Corruption
It expects to always be in power (breeds pride and nationalism)
It is cut throat - literally
It focuses too heavily on GDP growth
It's got some pretty crazy ideas of what progress is (build a road, tear it up, build the same road, tear it up... why? To keep people employed)
Xi Jinping overturned one of the best things about it and made himself leader for life. This is likely to result in stagnation and at worst a descent into Mao in his later years (absolutely power corrupts absolutely)
It doesn't move fast enough on human rights/environmental issues and shuts down reporting on these. This is due to perceived loss of face. They don't realise having a light shone on them HELPS them to clear it up (mobilises their population and encourages positive change)

36
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They sold us out for 9 years, nz will be sold out again under The National party

18
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Totally agree. Looking back now makes me wonder how on earth did National get away with doing nothing but to sell off NZ to the highest bidder! Most of which was dodgy money.

We don't have the guts to stand up for our rights..

We need to learn from the Hong Kong people

Take my hat off to them, they are brave

Either party is selling us out it seems, just to different buyers.

26
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I swore I would never vote labour again....add national to that!

11
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It's stunning how bad the political parties are.
We are forced to accept the choice between two main parties that are average at best.

12
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Average is being kind. Are politicians really this stupid and out of touch with reality...maybe?

what options do we really have left to vote for? seems to be going from bad to worse

30
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China has played/is playing Aotearoa via every National Party leader/potential leader so far, where is the doubt ?

The States has been doing it for decades.

11
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Oh, they have been playing the whole world for decades since the Second World War, no doubt.
But that was when many nations/people were not aware of things. Now with the net and connectivity, things are vastly different.
Attempts to influence another nation like these don't go unnoticed. Even the US is on the backfoot now.
But China seems to be just starting now, overtly, shedding the covert attempts made before in the world.
Confident much ? Or are they seeking to the fill a vacuum ?

If you had to choose between living under the political system of the US or China, which one would you prefer?

24
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US hands down. We wouldn't even be allowed to have this discussion if China ruled us.

Once sanity is restored after the Trump Presidency, let us hope the US recovers to its good old ways soon.
Trump seems be the second 9/11 that had visited the USA. One every decade is too much.

I lived in America during the GFC - it wasn't what I expected. The image they portray to the world, and the story they tell themselves (best god damn country in the world) was very different to reality. Individually the people were quite nice, but collectively I felt that they were really lost. And a massive contrast in qualities - I came across some of the most intelligent people, then 5 minutes later the least.

Yet to step foot in China so I can't really draw comparison...

When I went to America, it was the total opposite to what our media presents the US as. Go figure

It's the same with China how many people here have actually been there ? They just go on what is fed to them by the media

I've worked there. Have also lived in a couple of developing countries for multiple years. Have spent less time in the USA.

A lot of areas in the States look third world.

I lived in China for a number of years.

You don't question the government there. But who really cares? Generally people there are a lot less engaged in politics, because it's just yawningly boring. And they don't need to because they are being looked after quite well by competent leadership. 90% of people really couldn't give a toss and get on with other things. This was greatly liberating as we Westerners are constantly banging on about and have to be interested in politics in the West to "exercise our democratic rights". We trick ourselves into thinking we are powerful individuals who can effect big change... when the reality is very different.

Really smart and friendly people. You run across the occasionally overtly nationalistic tosser who freaks out about seeing a Westerner. One guy I walked past making noodles, he was amazing at it. I asked if I could do a video and he freaked out and threw me out of his shop! Scared Westerners will steal his noodle making secrets? Apparently so...

The population is a bit brainwashed, but more and more aware that they are brainwashed. They are also quite vanilla in their views of... everything. But that is a very Asian style, to have consensus rather than individual opinions expressed openly (undoubtedly they do hold them though). They have a different focus on life too - family, wealth (via education usually) and health, generally in that order.

So the facts should be told in these interviews.
How does that go with the States.
You are nothing but a corupt pack of war mongering, oil and power hungry idiots that are distroying the world.
Wasn't it Helen Clark that opened the China door... She didn't get that done by bagging them.

Mate, the US now is a 'has been'. China is the 'in thing'. Dion't rant. Be aware.

Totally agree 'has been' all right! Still running arround acting like they are the man though.
High and mighty thinking their own PR that their war machine can take anyone at will despite a massive list of failures v zip wins.
Not saying the better deal is with China.. as always hindge your bets.

Thanks Simon for underlining my acronym for campaign 2020....NVNA! Never Voting National Again! Maybe he was offerring the CCP the preferential rights to buy the land and buildings of our Parliament? Seems the sort of short sighted thing the National Party would do, I'm sure it would help balance the books for another 12 months though hey?

31
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I'm really curious to see what mental gymnastics the National party faithful have to go through to justify this as being ok. Simon and the National party are clearly bought and owned by the CCP. Right wingers say things about Jacinda like "she's a pretty communist" when the leader of the National is in bed with actual communists.....

Simon makes no mention of the abuse suffered by the protesters in Hong Kong, the violence directed and what are peaceful protests or the abuse suffered by the Uighur's in the internment camps (including organ harvesting ffs!). It's bloody disgusting that he would rather cozy up to the CCP for some sneaky donations then acknowledge and condemn these issues.

13
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Yes, where is Beijing Bridges on the Uighur human rights issue?

Not only are two Chinese better than two Indians in Simon's book, but apparently Uighurs don't even make it into the book.

Beijing Bridges - like it! Stealing it :)

“Now we have a situation where come December, certainly early next year, the WTO will not be able to function because the US is not allowing new judges to be appointed. This is not right and is not in New Zealand’s interests.”

I would be interested to hear Simon's opinion then on the Communist Party of China's undermining the International Court and Xi's flouncing about instead when the court did not rule the party's preferred way: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jul/13/china-damns-international-...

Yes this is the first thing I thought about!!! Why do journalists not engage brain first.

Speaking of the Chinese Diaspora in New Zealand, who the hell knows what they're getting intimated with through NZ free to air TV 24/7. Does our media have any idea of CCP influence on our fellow residents/citizens? Too hard basket, eh?

Yes, our government knows.
Google “United Front Work Department.” Then dig deeper...
see how entrenched into the first generation immigrants the UFWD is. It would appear, even some kiwi journalists do their work...
Our intelligence services just released their concerns on foreign influence... ie China... guess what? It was ignored by all our politicians...

21
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Interesting to see Jian Yang going back to his old schoolmates for a show and tell.

"Look what I've acquired."

12
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"Do you like my new pet, toilet trained, barks on command, verbal commands, no leash required"...

Do we have a closet Politburo here in Aotearoa ?

24
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Yet another great reason not to elect Bridges.

Come on both Labour and National meet with our trading partners. Lets quote Jacinda in April 2019

"Jacinda Ardern finished her whirlwind visit to Beijing with a meeting with President Xi Jinping who spoke about taking an already very good relationship to new heights but also said the two countries had to trust each other."

Where is the equal article rebuking Jacinda, she meet with the TOP official.....oh my

16
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There is a difference between meeting the leader of another country vs its chief of police.
There is a difference between talking up said country after a meeting vs praising its (single) leading party.
Especially weird given said party is the very definition of a communist party - 'communist' being National's no.1 choice of swear word aimed at Labour.

Really can you confirm that or is it just a Prof opinion.

"Guo Shengkun is a Chinese politician and business executive who currently serves as a Politburo member, a Central Secretariat secretary, and Secretary of the Central Political and Legal Affairs Commission of the Communist Party of China"

Have you read the article?
"Guo is one of 25 people with a seat on the Central Politburo, which oversees the Party.
He is also the Secretary of the Political and Legal Affairs Commission, which oversees all of China’s legal enforcement authorities, including the country's police, intelligence agencies and courts. Interest.co.nz understands that in general diplomatic practice, Guo isn't the person to meet foreign opposition delegations. Guo was formerly the Minister of Public Security."

Of course I did but I like to try and confirm facts externally and not just believe whats been stated in an article.

Surely the chief of the chief of police is worse than the chief of police, and even worse than saying that quickly...

The National Communist Party of New Zealand - sounds ok....um...what?! The world is getting more insane by the week....so many two faced values with nobody willing to make values/principles visible and standing true them...

NCPA...National Communist Party of Aotearoa is more appropriate, methinks.

Simon Bridges should be held up high for his mastery of electoral suicide.

but, but, he can play the drums.

and NZ has been played by Jacinda.

and NZ has been played by Jonkey
and NZ has been played by Auntie Helen
and NZ has been played by Sheepley
and NZ has been played by Booger
...how far should we go back with the whataboutism?

19
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Once again with Simon Bridges, it all comes back to the fact people don't trust him. With National forming such strong links with the Chinese communist party, can we trust the entire party? It feels as if they are being bought.

13
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Does anyone know if Simon's house is currently on the market?

Not sure about his house but I think his job might be. Problem is the front runner also had problems with her "fact finding" trips up north.

Nahh, I bet he's waiting until National can get back in to power again, so he can make a huge capital gain like Mr Key did by selling his home at the peak of the foreign buying. He probably figures that the Boomers will be annoyed by their falling house prices and can't wait to vote them back in so they can remove the foreign buyers ban. Little does he realize that even the Boomers now recognize that National created a false economy that has left NZ debt ridden.

13
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If you were on the fence about voting, this is the single interview to tell you NOT to vote national.

We live in interesting times.
While the daily economic focus is currently on the US-Chain trade wars, this is just one part of the bigger picture of Chinese expansion of interest and influence into both SE Asia (e.g. the Belt Road) and the Pacific.
A key question is, given US global presence and influences (and even NZ presence and influence in the Pacific), why should China as the second largest economic power not want and be able to have similar wider presence and influences?
I only hope that we are simply not just repeating the same scenario and course of events with Japan when similar action against Japan - including trade sanctions - during the 1930s eventually lead to open conflict.
Jacinda's and Scott Morrison's recent trips to the rarely visited pacific island nations are no coincident - it is all part of this developing geo-political situation.

To answer your question - see Hong Kong. I'd assume the rationale of not wanting to see more of the world controlled by a totalitarian dictatorship would apply.

There is a difference between not insulting one's host and being a "suck-up". I think Mr. Bridges crossed the line there. The CCP and China are not the same and it is only communist lap-dogs that blur the two. We can praise the advancements of the Chinese people and recognise that the evil of the CCP.

The CCP is a global threat not unlike the other evil empire that we thankfully defeated. We need to resist their imperialism and support the people of HK and the other nations in the region. I don't see much rule of law in the South China Sea from the PLA navy and that's a foretaste of the CCP's ambitions.

11
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Politics aside, we should thank the writer here. Some of her POV's I take issue with, but this is as good a piece as you'd find anywhere in the NZ media today. Kudos.

Hand it to National and will sell NZ to Chinesse, if not already done.

Everyone should rememebr that NZ is so small that China can buy NZ number of time and the process is on.

Winston Peter when in opposition makes lot of noise but when the time comes, vested interest overtake NZ interest.

20 pieces of silver coming your way Simon....

social credits these days!

Mr. Bridges has been christened to Mr. Chao.. wow he is so proud to be relabeled... renamed... stamped....stomped..... whatever you call it....

Chairman: Do as you told, or we can tell our people not to buy any more houses.
SB: Yes SIR!
SB: anything else SIR!

Should be renamed the International party.
As others have said, we are constantly let down by a succession of useless polititians.
Vote giving next year get's harder by the day.

Indeed, not a trace of nationalism in the National party these days.

Then again, as a general rule NZ's parties seemed to be named with a sense of irony. ACT talks the libertarian talk but doesn't walk the walk. NZ First puts New Zealand last. Labour no longer represents the best interests of New Zealand's working folk. McGillicuddy Serious was not serious.

Obsequious describes Bridges perfectly