Anyone familiar with The Standard could predict that the site would take a "worker solidarity" line on this issue, so that is no surprise. What really takes the cake are the vituperative comments directed towards anyone who suggests even the most moderate position. Banning commenters who disagree with you is a sure sign that you've lost the argument and are sliding towards insensibility.
And don't bother with Chris Trotter. In this post he compares Chris Finlayson to the Mouth of Sauron.
On the other side of the debate the mainstream news media appears to be taking a largely hostile approach towards the Australian union behind this dispute and backing "Our Peter", while the blogosphere on the right predictably rails against the commies.
But if you want to read something sensible and considered about the dispute between Peter Jackson and the Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance, there is hope. You could try Russell Brown or Gordon Campbell. Neither have an agenda or an axe to grind, and both examine the matter dispassionately.
The dispute shows no sign of abating. Stuff reports that Sir Peter Jackson requested a meeting with the actors' union, but was turned down. It can only be hoped that the two sides will get together soon, because if this continues our film industry may go down the plughole.
Update: It appears there is some question as to whether Jackson is legally able to deal with MEAA. The Herald reports:
Yesterday, Mr Finlayson said in a letter to the studios - which was also copied to Sir Peter and Ward-Lealand - that legal advice from the Crown Law Office confirmed the Commerce Act prevented The Hobbit's producers "from entering into a union-negotiated agreement with performers who are independent contractors". Section 30 of the act, which deals with price fixing, "effectively prohibits" such arrangements, he said.The MEAA has obtained an opinion from Simpson Grierson pointing out that Jackson could deal with them as employees, rather than independent contractors, and not breach section 30.
I’m not going to give a legal opinion on this. Both parties may well be right, but I’m no expert in these areas.