Dated: 14 May 2005
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Tony Blair has been back in Downing Street for just a few days and already he is telling more lies.
Ken Coates former Labour Party MEP
In Scotland Labour lost 500,000 votes, taking its lowest share of the vote since 1945. This suggests it is in terminal decline.
The fascist British National Party (BNP) did not enter the general election expecting to win a parliamentary seat. But it did hope to increase its share of the vote in a number of areas, building a base for next year’s local elections.
Around 11,000 HSBC bank workers were expecting the result of a strike ballot over pay as Socialist Worker went to press.
About 30 workers at the Ambala Food sweet factory in Stratford, east London, staged a third one-day strike against low pay on Friday of last week.
More than 60 engineers who look after domestic gas equipment in London staged a one-day strike on Monday of last week.
The threat of a strike ballot by 900 workers at Grampian Foods meat processing firm has forced bosses to back down over threats to axe their final salary pension scheme by the end of the month.
More than 300 shopfloor workers at the Norgren pneumatic components factory in Lichfield, Staffordshire, began four days of strike action on Thursday of last week.
Buses stop as pay fight continues Workers at Centra Buses struck for 24 hours on Monday of this week in a dispute over pay and conditions.
Following our recent resounding vote for strike action, and action short of a strike, members of the Natfhe lecturers union at London Metropolitan are set to strike on Monday to Friday of next week.
In 1999, when Dritan Dauti was 14, Serbian soldiers destroyed his village in Kosovo. He was separated from his family and, after living in a refugee camp in Macedonia, he managed to get to England where he was put in the care of his brother.
Students at the University of Westminster in London demonstrated on Wednesday of last week against the university management’s plans to change the academic timetable.
Bradford on Avon
The King’s and Festival theatres in Edinburgh face a summer of strikes as Bectu union members have begun a ballot for strike action over compulsory redundancies. Staff also allege that management are deliberately ignoring health and safety laws.
The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) conference took place in Southport this week following the election of left wing candidate Matt Wrack as general secretary.
Tony Blair took some big hits at the election, but that has not halted his mission to be "unremittingly New Labour" in the third term.
Tony Blair has brought back the disgraced former home secretary David Blunkett as secretary for work and pensions.
There are two big issues with nuclear weapons coming up during Blair’s third term. Firstly Blair has said that a decision will need to be made during this parliament on whether to replace Trident — Britain’s nuclear weapons system.
Prepare for taxing times Get ready for a thumping council tax bill, unless we can force the government to back off. The value of every home in England is being reassessed to calculate new council tax rates.
"Apart from George Galloway’s success, candidates standing for the anti-war Respect party won an average of 6.9 percent of the vote, easily the best performance by a far left party in British electoral history."John Curtice, Professor of politics at Strathclyde university
There’s a big corporate faction that desperately wants to push nuclear power forwards. They want to do this because it provides two things to them.
Join the protest for Babar Ahmad Supporters of Babar Ahmad, the south London IT worker facing extradition to the US on bogus terrorism charges, have called a demonstration to coincide with the judge’s final verdict in his trial on Tuesday of next week.
In the gallery of public figures there’s a special place for the person who dares defy the way things are. I can remember sitting in a cafe sometime in the late 1960s. Round the table were, among others, Tariq Ali and the Marxist commentator and historian Perry Anderson.
The unity we forged between communities in Newham was crucial. Different people had to join hands and work together. I could feel the discrimination breaking down during the campaign.
We live in a big prison. How else could you explain why state security forces prevented a solidarity delegation going to visit 400 striking weavers at the state-owned Esco company?
Bomb and gun attacks in Cairo at the end of April prompted warnings of a new Islamist offensive against tourists in Egypt. But this is unlikely to materialise. The political climate is changing fast — and not in favour of targeting tourists.
President George Bush is facing increasing hostility at home to his proposals to kill off the US’s social security programme, which provides state retirement and disability benefits to some 44 million Americans.
Hundreds of thousands of supporters of Hugo Chavez, Venezuela’s left wing president, marched through Caracas, the capital, on May Day in support of plans to introduce worker management across state run industries. Workers in Alcasa, the state aluminium company, have already started organising production themselves and electing their shop directors. "It is impossible for us to achieve our goals with capitalism, nor is it possible to find an intermediate path," Chavez told the crowds.
On 8 December, Gutierrez annulled the supreme court in Ecuador. He didn’t give any reason, or quote any law—he just abolished it because it was too independent. From that date the people started to organise themselves, holding assemblies and taking to the streets in massive numbers.
"Create conflict where necessary, communicate with all those suffering exploitation and oppression," was the message from Francesco Louca, one of eight members of the Portuguese Left Bloc (Bloco de Esquerda) elected to parliament in February.
Respect's breakthrough in the general election wasn’t the only success that the radical left in Europe has enjoyed this year.
Why do we need another book about the brain?
Labour is back in office. But its majority is more than halved, and it received the support of the lowest proportion of voters of any government since the introduction of universal suffrage.
Friday 13 MayLaunch of Socialist Film Club with a showing of classic Vietnam documentary Hearts and Minds, introduced by Jonathan Neale, 7pm, University College London, Gower Street WC1 (Euston Square tube). Price £5/£3. Phone 020 7637 1848 for tickets.
Saverio Costanzo's first feature film tells the story of a middle class Palestinian family whose home is taken over by the Israeli army.
Bang, Bang, Rock & RollArt Brut (Out 23 May)
Devils & Dust Bruce Springsteen
Every reader of Socialist Worker should set themselves a simple task over the coming days and weeks — to ask every one of our friends, neighbours, class and workmates to join Respect.
Our legal challenge It took a long time for the truth to finally start to come out, but the world now knows that Tony Blair lied to take us into an illegal war on Iraq.
at Friends Meeting House, Euston Road, London (Euston station)
Socialist Worker was vital reading for Respect and anti-war activists during the general election campaign. We brought together reports from across the country that highlighted the vibrancy of the left’s challenge to New Labour.
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