Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker

Issue: 1932

Dated: 18 Dec 2004

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Work longer and die younger

Don't let them steal your pension! THE GOVERNMENT has unveiled one of the single biggest assaults on workers’ living standards since the Second World War.

International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other


Morris inquiry scratches the surface of police racism

THE MORRIS inquiry, which reported on Tuesday, gave a glimpse of the unfair treatment dealt out to black and Asian officers in the Metropolitan Police. It found they were "disproportionately investigated" by the force.

Metropolitan Police: a long history of corruption, racism and criminality

The Morris inquiry is the latest in a series of investigations that should have exposed endemic racism and corruption in the Metropolitan Police.

Our Christmas brain teaser—name that dispute

YOU ARE at the Socialist Worker pub quiz:

Respect reaches a new audience

ONE HUNDRED people packed into a Respect meeting in Buxton, Derbyshire, last Saturday night. In the discussion someone commented that the Labour Party could never attract such an audience.

Who says?

"I don’t think I’ve ever been as depressed coming out of Death Row as I was leaving that place. It was terribly shocking."Clive Stafford Smith, human rights campaigner and lawyer for British Guantanamo detainees Moazzam Begg and Richard Belmar, after visiting them in their cells

‘I can’t afford to buy the Xmas cards I pack’

WORKERS ARE forced to endure Third World pay and conditions as they produce and pack the goods that are making supermarkets obscene profits this Christmas.

US troops vote with their feet

THE US army is facing desertion and recruitment failures as the disaster in Iraq bites into troop morale. Over 5,000 US soldiers have deserted since the war began.

Not taken at face value

EVERY TIME Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice is put on, questions arise about its portrayal of Shylock, the Jewish moneylender. With the film of the play starring Al Pacino as Shylock now showing, millions more than usual will see it for themselves.

Exposing the US empire’s feet of clay

Iraq war

Brighton: a test case for school assistants

LOW PAID teaching assistants in Brighton and Hove held a lively one-day strike on Friday of last week.

Walkout over pay betrayal

LECTURERS AT Bradford College organised a highly successful one-day strike on Wednesday of last week.

In brief

Let’s strike while the iron’s hot ABOUT 80 members of the GMB union working for the Multiserve steel company were set to strike on Monday of next week over pay.


FIFTY TWO people attended a public meeting called by firefighters in Islington, north London, last week to protest at plans to remove ten appliances from inner London and shut a station.

We deserve our share of the profits in the post

THE GUERRILLA warfare in many delivery offices over the last few months over the £26.28 a week bonus may be coming to an end. And, in general, our side has had the best of it.

Rail workers

MIDLAND MAINLINE train services ground to a halt last Sunday as the company’s own tight-fisted employment policy came back to haunt it.

Brewery workers

HUNDREDS OF workers at Interbrew’s four breweries in Britain are to ballot for industrial action after the company refused to accept national bargaining with unions.

Car workers

WORKERS AT Jaguar’s Browns Lane plant in Coventry have voted against strike action in their fight to keep their plant open.

Pickets celebrate their 20-0 victory

AROUND 130 Amicus and RMT union members at the Alstom Manchester Traincare depot in Longsight, Manchester, struck again on Friday of last week.

Civil Service workers

A 300-strong demonstration against the loss of 104,000 civil service jobs took place in Dunfermline, Gordon Brown’s constituency, last Saturday. The protest was organised by the PCS civil service workers’ union.

Support needed in crucial strike

SOCIAL WORKERS from Liverpool’s children and families team are set to start their fifth month on strike on Christmas Day. The action by 140 members of the Unison union is one of the longest all-out strikes in the last decade.


State clampdown on the ‘Saudi Spring’

A few days before last week’s attack by armed militants on the US consulate in the port city of Jeddah, a scuffle was taking place outside a courthouse in the capital, Riyadh. 

Help free Matthews Ndlovu

MATTHEWS NDLOVU, a South African activist fighting against privatisation, has been sentenced to two years in jail for "malicious damage to property".

Energy workers in their thousands take to the streets against privatisation

TWO PROTESTS in Pakistan have shown growing opposition to the privatisation policies of General Musharraf’s military regime.


Buddy, can you spare a dime?

WHAT WITH the bloody chaos being wreaked in Iraq by a re-elected Bush administration, the global scene is already pretty grim. But it could get a lot worse if the dollar crisis predicted by many commentators really gets going.


...£115,992 and rising

Cheer from readers "With the mainstream media both in the pro-war camp and in the pockets of big business, we need newspapers that speak for ordinary people like never before. Socialist Worker gives voice to the struggles of ordinary people both here and internationally. It deserves all our support."

This is how we can defend our pensions

‘Lots more pensioners mean we have to work for longer to pay for pensions.’

This affects all workers

This affects all workers I HAVE worked as a reception class teacher for 22 years. The government is now talking about making me look after 25 four year olds until I’m 65.

The Chartists' mighty display of democratic aspiration

Kennington Common, the area in London where Kennington Park and the Imperial War Museum now stand, was the scene of one of Britain’s most famous working class demonstrations on Monday 10 April 1848.

When Santa gave out some solidarity

I WAS seven in 1984 and when it came to December the overwhelming thing I remember was being so proud of my Mam and Dad.

The ghost of Christmas present

CHRISTMAS DAY 1962. I find the box I’d been longing for and break it open. I finally have a pair of Slazenger Challenge Three-Star football boots, as advertised in Charles Buchan’s Football Monthly. I couldn’t be happier.

Protest defies Egypt’s regime

A PROTEST in Egypt on Friday of last week defied the wrath of the security forces.


Art and culture for 2005


Bob Dylan: reluctant hero who spoke for his generation

"A song is like a dream, and you try and make it come true. They’re like strange countries that you have to enter. You can write a song anywhere, in a railroad compartment, on a boat, on horseback – it helps to be moving" – Chronicles, p165.

Unexpected impressions from a face to face encounter

Manet Face to Face

In brief

Visions of Zimbabwe: When Words Fail Art Speaks

What We Think

Other Categories

The debate on ASBOs

I WAS delighted to see your recent supplement on Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) in Salford (Socialist Worker, 4 December). It covered a situation that the mainstream press has largely shunned.


Three new CDs


Wednesday 26-31 January

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