Socialist Worker

Inside the system

Issue No. 1795

Desmond's lies invade Express

The Express under millionaire boss Richard Desmond has been at the forefront of whipping up anti-refugee feeling. It recently ran an article with the headline 'Migrant Wave Swamps Tunnel'. A picture appeared to show two refugees crawling through the fence near the Channel Tunnel terminal in France.

In fact one of the alleged 'refugees' in the picture is Sunday Express journalist Paul McMullan, from another article back in December. And the fence pictured was not at the Channel Tunnel terminal, but that around the Sangatte refugee camp several miles away.


Not so Golden Jubilee

Plans for 'community celebrations' of the queen's Golden Jubilee in the Eastfield area of Scarborough have been shelved after NO ONE turned up to a meeting to discuss ideas.

Three councillors sat in an empty hall in Eastfield, North Yorkshire's biggest housing estate. Even the lure of £1,000 to fund a Jubilee event was not enough to tempt anyone to the meeting.

Thanks to readers in Scarborough for this story.


Kodak's unpaid workers

GIANT photographic corporation Kodak has been attacked for using unpaid mentally disabled people in South Wales to pack its products. About 20 disabled people at Neath and Port Talbot council's Vocational Skills Centre have been spending an average of 20 hours a week packing products for the ColourCare photo-processing works.

ColourCare was bought up in January this year by Kodak. The workers get no pay. The council says that once they have been properly 'trained' it hopes to negotiate a deal with Kodak for the workers to get paid £20 a week!

thanks to readers in Neath for this story.


Henry Kissenger

Henry Kissinger, as the former US Secretary of State, backed Operation Condor in Argentina. This savage plan under the 1970s military dictatorship sytematically murdered 30,000 activists. Now the Argentinian government is paying Kissinger. The regime is handing the US war criminal $24,000 a month to lobby the International Monetary Fund on its behalf.


Paying for pollution

THE government is stuffing millions into the pockets of big business in a new scheme that is supposed to be about tackling climate change.

The scheme centres around a controversial plan to allow polluting companies and countries to trade 'rights to pollute', under which they can buy and sell permits to pump out carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide is the main gas responsible for the greenhouse effect and global warming. To get the scheme off the ground the government agreed to pay companies millions of pounds for improvements in cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

Now it has emerged that companies have been pocketing millions by claiming for changes they have already introduced, or which are necessary to comply with existing laws. British Airways will pocket £6.6 million for cutting greenhouse gas emissions from its planes. The fall is down to it cutting routes over recent years.


Boot camp failure

An official study has now shown that the military-style 'boot camps' introduced by the Tories are a failure. Michael Howard, now shadow chancellor, ordered some young offenders to be banged up in the Military Corrective Training Centre.

He claimed this tough regime made the young offenders less likely to reoffend. In fact those locked up in the Colchester centre were MORE, not less, likely to reoffend than other offenders, and were particularly likely to go on to commit violent offences.


Murdering for multinational?

Multinational coal company Drummond is facing a US court case over its alleged role in the assassination of trade union activists in Colombia. Coca-Cola is also facing legal action in a US court.

Last March a mine in Colombia owned by Drummond was at the centre of a row with local trade unions. Colombia is notorious for right wing paramilitaries assassinating trade union activists.

At the Drummond mine local union president Valmore Lacarno and vice-president Victor Orcasita asked the company if they could sleep at the site, as they had been warned of possible assassination attempts. The company refused. The two were then hauled off a company bus taking them back to a nearby village and shot by paramilitaries. Seven months later the new president of the miners' union at Drummond mine, Gustavo Sole, was also assassinated.


Cherie's tips for bullies

Cherie Booth, top lawyer and prime minister's wife, is to address a conference on employment law.

The conference is to brief firms on their rights. But the tone of the proceedings is perhaps reflected in the large cartoon on the brochure cover. It has a boss saying, 'Damn it. If I can't bully my staff, who can I bully?'


Things they say

'I can no longer support a party that refuses to stand up to big business and refuses to protect our children's future.'
Film-maker JACK PRICE, who directed one of New Labour's general election broadcasts, on why he is now backing the Green Party

'Police entrance exam – a crowd stands nine deep on each side of a one and a half kilometre route. Assuming each person takes up one metre, how many people are present? (Hint-one royalist is equal to 15 ordinary punters, or 150 trade unionists.)'
ANDY WRAGG, Guardian letters page

'WE ARE doing what you did in Algeria, only we are going to stay here.'
ARIEL SHARON to the French government

'THE LAST attacks on Iraq killed a lot of innocent civilians and enormously strengthened Saddam Hussein, because a dictator can always blame the death of civilians on the foreign power rather than on himself.'
LORD HEALEY, former Labour chancellor

'THERE IS a sense that the campaign could become sick, and in this country sickness can become malaria.'
TAJ MOHAMMAD, Afghan politician and friend of the interim prime minister on the British military campaign

'THE Americans told us not to trust anybody but were afraid to put their own boots on the ground. They didn't have a clue what was going on, so we were sent in to get some ground truth.'
BRITISH COMMANDO in Afghanistan

'ARCHER does tend to strut around rather arrogantly, and on this occasion his behaviour was inappropriate.'
PRISON OFFICER at Boston jail in Lincolnshire on the removal of Lord Archer's prison privileges


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Article information

Inside the System
Sat 13 Apr 2002, 00:00 BST
Issue No. 1795
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