Friday, January 29, 2016

The tenants arrive here and are carried along the corridor on a conveyor belt in extreme comfort, past murals depicting Mediterranean scenes, towards the rotating knives. The last twenty feet of the corridor are heavily soundproofed. The blood pours down these chutes

Bribery: We're doin it rong.
The New Zealand Government still intends to give a $3 million abattoir to Saudi Arabia [...]
But Mr Key said the abattoir would still be sent.
"We don't have any plans to change what we're doing in that area, it's not to the Saudi government per se, it's to an investor and it's the establishment of an agricultural hub in Saudi Arabia."
Saudi law prevents private ownership of slaughterhouses so the New Zealand-funded abattoir will be given to the Saudi government - which will then lease it back to the Saudi businessman, Hamood Al-Ali Al-Khalaf, on whose farm it will be built. [...]
The abattoir is to be delivered to his farm in the Saudi desert as part of the government's multi-million dollar deal to placate him.
To sum up (for those who weren't paying attention):
The NZ government is subsidising their impoverished Saudi counterparts to set up a sheep farm, in the middle of the desert, to compete with NZ agricultural exports.
It is not entirely clear what purpose the abattoir will serve, since sheep sent to the desert in previous phases of the bribery campaign keep dying in sandstorms (I am not making this up). But a member of that regime continues to block a friendlier trade deal -- despite the $9 million we have already paid him in cash and in kind -- leaving us no
choice but to keep paying him more.

It is not as if the Saudi despots lack slaughterhouse expertise and need New Zealand assistance. Can't they just declare their sheep to have “broken allegiance with the ruler”, or be guilty of gnostical turpitude or something?


H. Rumbold, Master Barber said...

Proving there's more than one way to do a lamb chop.

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

I thought this kowtowing to the Saudis was a purely 'Murkin thing.

Smut Clyde said...

It doesn't seem such a really good idea to become so cozy with a regime that can't be long for this world. I mean, the House of Saud has no particular legitimacy, being just a band of camel-shaggers who managed to seize power 80 years ago. They've only hung on so long by keeping most of the population in medieval ignorance, and because they have enough money for a large secret-police force and for fundamentalist bafflegab to distract the masses. They can't allow any constructive, non-corrupt economy to develop because that would involve education outside the central elite.

When they staged mass executions to celebrate the ascension of a new monarch, to demonstrate that Salman bin Abdulaziz is as murderous as ever despite his dementia, I thought "This regime is not displaying any sense of security. Or of good decisions."

I suppose there are people in the States who see the Sauds as a role model.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

I mean, the House of Saud has no particular legitimacy, being just a band of camel-shaggers who managed to seize power 80 years ago.

It's all about the Benjamins. Like the healthcare "industry" and the Wall St. "industry," they know which American politicians to buy. And which corporate media to keep well-lubricated, too.