Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker


Issue: 2199

Dated: 01 May 2010



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Divided Britain

Mainstream politicians have refused to talk about the deep inequality in Britain during the election campaign.


International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other

News

Just who are the Liberal Democrats?

The leaders’ television debates have thrown the election into chaos.

Sats: the tests that fail our kids

Primary school headteachers across Britain have voted to boycott the Sats assessment tests for 11 year olds. Around 600,000 children were to take the tests from 10 May.

Eamonn McCann: Fighting for unity in Derry

The general election in Northern Ireland is dominated by sectarian division – except in Foyle, Derry, where People Before Profit candidate Eamonn McCann is standing.

TUSC round up: Taking the socialist message across the country

Sheffield Housing issues and the economic crisis are at the heart of discontent in Sheffield, where Maxine Bowler is standing for MP and councillor.

TUSC: Socialists stoke anger with mainstream politics

Socialist candidates are picking up bitter feelings on the doorstep as they take on the major parties in the general election.

Stopping the BNP

Merseyside Three local Labour councillors and four teachers were among 20 people on a UAF stall last Saturday. Activists sold tickets for the Barnsley Love Music Hate Racism carnival on 1 May and are going to be leafleting metro stations, holding stalls and canvassing next week.

Defending public services

Around 100 civil service workers lobbied the High Court in London last week before the PCS union’s judicial review against attacks on their redundancy payments.

Protest over construction workers’ deaths

Workers’ Memorial Day – 28 April – is marked with commemorations across the world.

Rail workers battle for jobs

Sacked Jarvis workers are protesting outside Network Rail headquarters this Wednesday – they are in no mood to give up the fight for their jobs.

Stop Abdul Omer’s victimisation

Sacked Unite union convenor, Abdul Omer, was waiting for the outcome of his disciplinary hearing as Socialist Worker went to press.

Bosses suspend union activist

A CWU union activist and staff representative has been suspended from his job at a Pell and Bales call centre in east London.

Strike vote over pay freeze at National Physical Laboratory

Members of the Prospect civil service workers union at the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) are voting on strikes after the Serco company tabled a 0 percent pay offer.

Further evidence in Yunus Bakhsh hearing

The employment tribunal into the sacking of nurse and union activist Yunus Bakhsh has heard further evidence from Peter Chapman, the Unison union full-time officer originally assigned to Yunus’s case.

No to cuts in Dundee University

Around 100 workers and students protested at Dundee University on Monday against job cuts.

Northumberland College shut by strike

Lecturers shut Northumberland College when they struck on Thursday of last week.

Crest Boys Academy strike against redundancies

Teachers at Crest Boys Academy in Neasden, north west London, struck for one day on Wednesday of last week against seven redundancies.

Time for real action at Corus

Steelworkers at Corus in Teesside are to be balloted for industrial action over the closure of their plant.

Postal workers vote to accept deal with Royal Mail

Postal workers have accepted a deal to end their long running dispute with Royal Mail.

Fire bosses on offensive

Essex firefighters could strike after bosses pulled a pay deal off the table at the last minute.

Bolivia climate conference: The poor take charge of battle for the planet

There are now two sides in global climate politics – theirs and ours.

Deal a knock out blow to Nazi BNP

The British National Party (BNP) wants to claw its way into parliament and seize control of councils in key areas of Britain in next week’s elections.

5 May strikes launch united fightback against the cuts

The fightback against cuts in pay, jobs and services continues as the bosses, backed by the government, attempt to make workers pay for their crisis.

Lecturers set to strike on election day

Lecturers at King’s College have planned strikes for 5 May and election day.

Glasgow council workers prepare to strike

Workers plan to strike and shut Glasgow’s leading tourist attractions, libraries and sports centres on Friday of this week.

Unions back Whittington Hospital campaign

Campaigners against the closure of key wards at north London’s Whittington Hospital were holding a day of action on Thursday this week, focusing on a rally from 12 noon at the hospital.

Hundreds hit the streets to stop the BNP

Hundreds of anti-fascists took part in a national day of action against the BNP last weekend.

Farepak victims slapped in face once more

Victims of Christmas hamper firm Farepak’s financial demise were kicked in the teeth again this week. They will only receive around 15p for every £1 they paid into the scheme.

May Day protests to unite workers

Thousands of trade unionists, anti-capitalists and socialists will unite on London’s May Day demonstration this Saturday.

Get the Nazis off our TV screens!

Unite Against Fascism (UAF) held a protest outside the BBC on Monday evening against the airing of the British National Party’s (BNP) election broadcast.

Meet the fat cats stealing all our wealth

Usmanov, Kim & Agarwal

Day of action to stop BNP

Unite Against Fascism

British Airways: throw out the deal and get the strikes back on

Bassa, the cabin crew section of the Unite union, is set to run an online ballot on a fresh document from British Airways (BA).

Official: cops murdered anti-racist Blair Peach

Anti-Nazi protester Blair Peach was "almost certainly" killed by police during a demonstration against the National Front in Southall, west London, in 1979.

Greek crisis could be Britain's future

Greek workers are at the centre of the global battle to decide which class will pay for the economic crisis.

Bosses' paper reveals what the cuts would mean

The Financial Times newspaper, using government figures, suggests the main parties’ plans to cut the deficit would require "all of the following:

Workers hit by falling pay and rising prices

Figures last week showed:

Vibrant TUSC rally in Tottenham

Over 100 people packed in to a Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) rally in Tottenham, north London, on Tuesday evening.

Anti fascists get BNP removed from hustings in Kent

St Mark’s Church in Gillingham, Kent, have withdrawn their hustings invitation to the British National Party (BNP) thanks to pressure from across the community organised by Unite Against Fascism (UAF) activists in the area.

Support Glasgow Culture and Sport strikers

Workers in Culture and Sport Glasgow (CSG) are striking on Friday, 30 April, in a dispute over a wage cut of up to 10 percent for almost 200 workers, a pay freeze for all other workers and cuts in public holidays and overtime rates.

Sacked Jarvis workers protest at Network Rail's headquarters

Up to 300 sacked Jarvis workers and their supporters staged an angry demonstration today, Wednesday, outside Network Rail’s London headquarters.

Abdul Omer sacking upheld

Abdul Omer Mohsin, Unite union convenor for London Sovereign buses, lost his appeal against dismissal on Tuesday.

BNP under fire

Croydon candidate assaulted anti fascist activists Croydon British National Party (BNP) election candidate David Clarke has been found guilty of attacking four anti-fascist protesters in 2009. He will be sentenced on the 18 May.

Victory for Whittington Hospital campaign

Campaigners for the Whittington hospital in north London were holding a day of action today in jubilant mood today as health secretary Andy Burnham was forced to confirm that vital services there would not be axed.

Manchester Tusc reaches out to workers

Karen Reissmann is the Trade Union and Socialist Coalition candidate for Gorton, Manchester. She spoke to Socialist Worker about the latest developments in her election campaign.

Aylesbury says no to the English Defence League

The English Defence League’s attempted invasion of Aylesbury in Buckinghamshire failed today.

Protests as EDL occupy site of mosque in Dudley

The racist English Defence League (EDL) have descended on Dudley again. They turned up on the proposed site for the new Dudley mosque and occupied an empty warehouse on Sunday afternoon.

EDL driven out of Dudley

English Defence League (EDL) members have been humiliated and driven out of Dudley today. Anti-fascist activists and the local Asian community combined to halt the EDL seizure of an empty warehouse on the proposed site of a new mosque.


International


Comment

Volcanic and social eruptions

Natural events such as volcanic eruptions can test faultlines in society­ – as well as those in the Earth’s crust from which they arise.

Court hears of anger over Gaza

Martin Askew, who was arrested at the London protests against the Israeli invasion of Gaza, was found guilty on two counts of violent disorder on Tuesday. He will be sentenced on 28 May.


Features

Marxism 2010: ideas to change the world

With the general election almost upon us, much has been said, written and discussed in the mainstream press.

Kent State: When US state shot down American students

On 4 May 1970, the United States National Guard shot dead four students at Kent State University in Ohio – triggering a wave of rage that spread across the US.

Right to Work: fighting laws that are rigged against workers

Employers are increasingly turning to the anti-trade union laws to prevent workers taking industrial action.

Fighting the fascists with music - then and now

The Love Music Hate Racism carnival in Barnsley this weekend will be everything that the British National Party despises. It will be a celebration of all that is brilliant about multicultural Britain.

Leeds united as city rocks against racism once again

More than 400 black, white and Asian people of all ages packed into a Love Music Hate Racism gig in Leeds last month.

The Bolsheviks and working in ‘the pigsty’

The experience of the Russian Bolsheviks shows that parliament can be a useful platform for revolutionaries.

Facts that expose immigration lies

Immigration does not cause unemployment

Blair Peach: killed by police

Monday 23 April 1979 was a stormy day in west London. Schools were still on Easter holiday. Ealing’s arterial Uxbridge Road was strangely quiet because the buses were on strike, as were many food and textile factories.


Reviews

Summer festivals

Levellers Day A festival celebrating the radicals in the English civil war in the seventeenth century. This year’s festival focuses on the issue of sustainable food for all, with speakers including Professor Tim Lang, Tristram Stuart and David Gardner.

1001 Inventions

This replica of a 12th century elephant clock is part of the 1001 Inventions free exhibition at the Science Museum in central London until 30 June. Refreshingly, it shows the contribution of Muslims to social, scientific and technological progress.

The House of Rajani: novel illuminating Zionist takeover of Palestine

This Acclaimed novel is set in Palestine in 1895 – the year that saw the publication of Theodor Herzl’s book, The Jewish State. This marked the beginning of modern Zionism.

The Prisoner and V are caught in the past

The recent reimagining of Battlestar Galactica has a lot to answer for. It took its basis from a pretty naff late-1970s TV series but was a brilliant and highly successful meditation on the "war on terror".

Juan Antonio Samaranch: A fascist who moulded the Olympic games

The obituaries of Juan Antonio Samaranch, the former head of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) who died last week, focused on his sporting role.


What We Think

Vote left and prepare to fight after election

It is still unclear who will win the most votes, who will have the most seats or who will be the government after 6 May. But no party or combination of parties will have a mandate for the cuts they will then try to unleash.


Other Categories

Tim's view

Tim: say sorry?

Letters

Who’s running Britain: Gordon Brown or Willie Walsh? The airline bosses got their own way in the end.

In their own words

‘The age of austerity is over. The wealthy are more prepared to open their wallets than at any time in the past two years’



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