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Socialist Worker


Issue: 2071

Dated: 06 Oct 2007




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'Our fight is with the bosses — and with Gordon Brown'

by Gareth Eales, branch secretary, Northamptonshire Amal CWU


International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other

News

Postal workers' strike restarts with solid walkouts

Thousands of postal workers restarted their long running dispute with Royal Mail today by walking out in the first of two planned 48-hour strikes.

Postal workers' strike: picket line reports from around the country

<a href="#cam">Cambridge</a> | <a href="#car">Cardiff</a> | <a href="#cor">Cornwall</a> | <a href="#cov">Coventry</a> | <a href="#edi">Edinburgh</a> | <a href="#gla">Glasgow</a> | <a href="#liv">Liverpool</a> | <a href="#lon">London</a> | <a href="#lut">Luton</a> | <a href="#man">Manchester</a> | <a href="#not">Nottingham</a> | <a href="#pre">Preston</a>

Why we should all back the post workers' strikes

Why are postal workers on strike?

Arun Kundnani: How liberals lost their anti-racism

A new sentiment has gripped mainstream liberal thinking in Britain over the last few years – one which regards Muslims as uniquely problematic and in need of forceful integration into "superior" Western values.

March on parliament to defy Stop the War ban, says Tony Benn

Tony Benn and Labour national executive member Walter Wolfgang are set to defy the law and lead a banned anti-war march down Whitehall to parliament next Monday—the day Gordon Brown has promised to deliver a statement on Britain's presence in occupied Iraq.

Chilling signs that Brown will back a US attack on Iran

Gordon Brown was in Basra in Iraq on Tuesday of this week to announce that 1,000 British troops would leave the city by the end of the year. But 4,000 will remain in Iraq – despite being driven out of Basra city last month.

Growing anger at New Labour as post fight heats up

The fight between the CWU postal workers' union and Royal Mail is a political dispute in which Gordon Brown is the real power behind the scenes.

Postal dispute round-up

Attacks on the union in Watford Bosses called in police to attempt to move workers they were disciplining from the Watford mail centre on Friday of last week &#8211; a move that could have ended in tragedy.

Labour and Tories swing right as general election looms

As political debate centres on the imminence of a general election, this should not mask the fact that Gordon Brown's electoral strategy is to move New Labour yet further rightwards to win Tory votes.

Final day of Faslane protest against Trident weapons

Over 500 activists protested on Monday of this week at the Faslane nuclear base in Scotland. This was the final day of the year-long Faslane 365 campaign. Over 160 protesters were arrested at the demonstration.

Tory minister Sayeeda Warsi panders to BNP bigotry

Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, shadow minister for community cohesion, sparked outrage last weekend by saying people who vote for the fascist British National Party (BNP) have "very legitimate views" on immigration.

Brown's public spending review set to cut services

Gordon Brown is set to reveal this month the comprehensive spending review that outlines public spending for the next three years.

Respect launches fundraising drive for snap election

Respect has launched an emergency £20,000 general election fundraising drive in preparation for an early poll.

A gun crime march that will pin the blame on the system

Campaigners against gun and knife crime in Tottenham, north London, are gearing up for a protest march on Sunday of next week.

Manchester health strikers defend nurse Karen Reissmann

Management at Manchester mental health trust this week moved closer to disciplining, and possibly even sacking, leading health trade unionist Karen Reissmann.

Teaching assistants in Northern Ireland take strike action

Over 3,000 classroom assistants took strike action across Northern Ireland on Wednesday of last week to stop attacks on their pay and conditions.

Why local government workers should vote yes to a strike

Every one of the 800,000 Unison union members in local government who are due to be balloted from next week should vote for strikes to stop pay cuts and attacks on conditions.

Government loans will not solve the single status crisis

The government has stepped in to attempt to resolve the continuing chaos over the single status pay agreement.

Disputes in Birmingham, Glasgow and Bolton councils

Over 2,000 Unison union members who work for Birmingham council have attended mass meetings to discuss the imminent imposition of new contracts.

Unions win concessions for Remploy workers

In response to the coordinated union campaign against the closure of Remploy factories for disabled workers, minister Peter Hain has claimed there is a "good future" for the factories.

Pay battle looms for London bus workers

Up to 12,000 bus workers at four different companies in London are currently moving towards industrial action to win better pay.

Civil service workers in consultative ballot

Over 250,000 members of the PCS civil service workers' union are taking part in a consultative ballot to decide the next step in their dispute over job cuts, low pay and privatisation.

Tube drivers take action over unsafe trains

Tube drivers on the Circle, Hammersmith and City and District lines on the London Underground last week showed how workers have the power to put safety over managers' wishes.

Further education lecturers set to discuss pay

A special pay conference for members of the UCU lecturers' union in further education colleges is set to take place this Saturday, which will discuss whether to reject a below inflation pay offer.

Domino's pizza workers get some dough

Thirteen Hungarian pizza workers employed by a Domino's pizza franchise in Derby and Wolverhampton are celebrating a victory in their campaign for workplace justice.

Coventry journalists set to ballot for strikes

Some 40 members of the NUJ journalists' union at the Coventry Telegraph are balloting for strike action over inadequate editorial staffing levels.

Jean Charles de Menezes: court case starts

A series of "catastrophic" errors by police officers at all levels led to the shooting of innocent Brazilian Jean Charles de Menezes at Stockwell Tube station, in 2005, a court has heard.

Reports round-up

New audience at anti-war teach-in Students joined long-standing peace campaigners at a 150 strong anti-war teach-in organised jointly by Manchester university students' union and Greater Manchester Stop the War Coalition.

Stop The War forces police to back down over march

With just an hour to go the metropolitan police told organisers of today’s Not One More Death protest that it would not be banned from marching to parliament.


International

Historic victory for Egyptian workers at Mahalla textile plant

They brought drums and homemade placards, set up a sea of tents in the factory grounds and turned the forecourt of the mill into a week-long mass meeting.

GDL drivers' union to stage fresh rail strikes in Germany

Train drivers in Germany announced a national one-day strike to take place on Friday of this week, after negotiations with national rail operator Deutsche Bahn (DB) broke down.

General Motors strike: a missed opportunity by the UAW

The United Auto Workers (UAW) union called off a strike by 73,000 workers at the General Motors (GM) US car firm, despite two days of solid action last week, after reaching a deal with the company.


Comment


Features

The tangled history of Labour and the trade unions

Why do trade union leaders echo widespread anger at the Labour government, yet also seem determined to support a Labour Party that is hell-bent on attacking working people?

3. Building revolutionary parties

John Riddell, the pre-eminent historian of the Communist Third International, continues his series by looking at the Comintern's attempt to build a worldwide party while avoiding the mistakes of the Second International

Rebellion rocks Burma as protesters defy repression

Last week saw Burma's military junta struggling to put down a rebellion of monks and ordinary people flocking onto the streets to protest against political repression and demand democracy.

The real struggle takes place on the streets of Burma

The mainstream media concentrates on the pronouncements of foreign governments and the supposed role of the United Nations in stopping the bloodshed perpetrated by the Burmese military junta.

Britain's brutal record of imperialism in Burma

Many people horrified by the brutality of the Burmese regime say that the "international community" should intervene in the country. But the history of Burma shows that meddling by imperial powers has always made things worse.

How mass struggle can start to shift the 'muck of ages'

Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels suggested two reasons why revolution is necessary.


Reviews

Gerald Laing: Art that commemorates the brutality and horror of war

This year has seen the often apolitical art scene in Britain burst into life with critiques of the war in Iraq and Afghanistan – most notably Mark Wallinger's Turner prize nominated State Britain installation.

Highlights from the autumn events at Bookmarks

The Bridge of the Golden Horn With Emine Sevgi Özdamar and John Berger. Bloomsbury Baptist Church, 235 Shaftsbury Avenue, London, 7pm, Friday 5 October. Tickets £4/£2 from Bookmarks – phone 020 7637 1848


What We Think

Paying a bully to rough you up

In among the "will he won't he" hype over whether Gordon Brown will call a general election, the prime minister has asked the union leaders for some cash.


Other Categories

Letters

Pakistani state jails democracy activists The recent announcement that General Musharraf will be allowed to seek election while remaining head of the military should dispel any doubts about the tyrannical nature of the Pakistani regime.

Meetings, events and demonstrations

Meetings And Events



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