Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker


Issue: 2203

Dated: 29 May 2010




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Support the BA strikers: Fighting against bullying bosses

Union-busting The dispute is not about saving money. It is about union-busting.


International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other

News

A good day for anti-fascists in Newcastle

A Unite Against Fascism demonstration halted plans by the racist English Defence League (EDL) to take over the centre of Newcastle today.

Revealed: Expenses minister David Laws hosted parliament dinner for partner's lobby firm

The Lib Dem minister with dodgy expenses, David Laws, hosted a dinner in the House of Commons for the lobbying company, Edelman. His partner James Lundie is a director with Edelman.

PROTEST TODAY after at least ten killed as Israel attacks Gaza aid convoy

Israeli forces have attacked the international aid convoy Freedom Flotilla on its way to the besieged Gaza Strip, killing at least ten people and leaving more than 50 injured. Reuters news agency is reporting 16 dead.

Join the protests over massacre on aid convoy by Israelis

Join the protests today, 31 May, against the massacre

Rage in London at Israel's killing of peace activists

Hundreds of people are protesting this afternoon outside Downing Street against Israel’s murder of a number of peace activists on Monday morning. Israeli forces stormed the Freedom Flotilla international aid convoy to Gaza, killing more than ten people.

Protest as Israeli ambassador addresses Hay-on-Wye festival tomorrow

Israeli ambassador Ron Prosor is due to address the Hay Festival on Tuesday 1 June at 8pm. His theme is the state of Anglo-Israeli relations.

Thousands protest at Israeli embassy after slaughter

Thousands of people are protesting outside the Israeli embassy on Kensington High Street in London against the murder of peace activists on the humanitarian Freedom Flotilla. People are chanting, "Free Palestine" and "Shut down the embassy."

Protests around Britain against Israel's Gaza Flotilla attack

Demonstrations have taken place around the country against tonight against the Israeli massacre. They include:

Right to Work conference sparked the flame of resistance

More than 600 trade unionists, workers, community activists and students gathered in London last Saturday for the emergency Right to Work post-election conference.

Workshops brought activists together to plan for the coming battles

How strikes can win Over 70 people came to the workshop on how strikes can win and how we can deal with the anti-union laws.

Photos of the Right to Work conference, 22 May 2010

Why does Labour give in to the racists?

Most contenders for the leadership of the Labour Party think that a failure to take a tough line on immigration cost the party the general election.

Johnston Press journalists to re-ballot

The National Union of Journalists (NUJ) is re-balloting members working for Johnston Press after the courts granted the company an injunction against their strike last week.

Fighting back for education

Richmond College and the University of Arts UCU lecturers’ union members at Richmond College and the University of Arts (UAL) were to strike on Thursday of this week.

Glasgow leisure staff escalate strike action

Strikes were set to shut Glasgow’s libraries, sport centres and the city’s biggest tourist attractions this weekend.

Fighting for justice for Julian Webster

Angry protesters from the Justice for Julian Webster campaign occupied the foyer of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) in Manchester last Friday chanting "No Justice! No Peace!"

Runcorn DHL workers told truck off

Ten drivers employed on a DHL contract with Howdens Kitchens in Runcorn have been sacked including Unite union branch secretary Kenny Rowe.

Jerry Hicks for Unite leader

Socialist Worker supporters are backing Jerry Hicks in the election for general secretary of the Unite union.

Ship workers’ wildcat strike

OVER 100 workers at Cammell Laird ship repair yard in Birkenhead, Merseyside, walked out unofficially last week over plans to sack 180 workers.

No release at Glen Dimplex

The 380 members of the Community Union based at pressure cooker manufacturer Glen Dimplex in Prescot, Merseyside, continued their industrial action this week.

No allowances for Derby council workers

Workers at Derby council have voted in favour of industrial action over the removal of car allowances.

Ballot to defend Abdul Omer

Bus workers at two Sovereign Bus garages in west London were set to take part in a consultative ballot this Friday for strike action in defence of their sacked union Unite convenor.

East Coast guards balloting

Guards in the RMT union on the East Coast mainline began balloting this week over cuts in earnings.

Talks in Tube Lines dispute

The Aslef train drivers’ union suspended its strike over pay on Tube Lines last weekend for talks with management.

Brilliant action puts pressure on bosses

Cabin crew at British Airways (BA) are fighting one of the most vicious bosses in Britain. They face attacks that will be familiar to millions of workers—job cuts, pay cuts and attacks on their union.

Cuts coalition plans to privatise more schools

There was no "austerity" on display from the queen as she paraded into parliament with the usual bizarre and pointless display of pomp and ceremony.

Middlesex students targeted for fighting cuts

Middlesex university suspended three workers and four students this week for fighting to defend education.

How you can support the BA strikers

Invite a BA striker into your union branch or workplace to explain the dispute and build support Pass a motion in your union supporting the strikers and donating to the strike fund Visit picket lines at Heathrow from 8am on strike days and the strike centre at Bedfont Football ground. Bring banners and delegations. Collect for the strike fund. Take your collection to the picket line Email messages of support to <a href="mailto:chairman@bassa.co.uk">chairman@bassa.co.uk</a>

Victory for suspended Sussex students

Suspended students at Sussex university, known as the Sussex Six, won a fantastic victory when the most serious charges against them were dropped at disciplinary hearings last week.

Walsh is reason for talks failure

THE MEDIA and some trade union leaders have blamed a protest involving Socialist Workers Party members for the collapse of Acas conciliation service talks between British Airways and the Unite union last Saturday.

Tories bring back plans to sell off Royal Mail

The government is set to try to sell off Royal Mail once again, it announced this week.

Bullying is wrecking work

"Dave", a cabin crew member, spoke at last weekend’s Right to Work conference, receiving two standing ovations.

Detention of asylum seeker children is not over

Ending the detention of children of asylum seekers will not alievate their misery or prevent their deportation.

Protests will take on EDL's racist thugs

The English and Welsh Defence Leagues are planning demonstrations to whip up anti-Muslim hatred in Newcastle this Saturday and in Cardiff on 5 June.

The return of the ‘sus’ laws?

New home secretary Theresa May promised to ramp up police powers in her speech to the Police Federation annual conference in Bournemouth.

Boris Johnson attacks peace protest

London Mayor Boris Johnson has launched an attack on the peace and democracy protesters camped in Parliament Square.

Oil spill keeps getting worse

The oil disaster that began on 20 April after the Deepwater Horizon rig owned by BP exploded in the Gulf of Mexico, killing 11 workers, continues to get worse.

Tories wield knife in first lot of cuts

Tory chancellor George Osborne attacked every one of us on Monday as he slashed more than £6 billion from government budgets.

Nasty cuts hidden in the detail

George Osborne’s first vicious cuts include:

Fightback is launched from Scotland to Kirklees

Paul Holmes, branch secretary of Kirklees Unison and left wing candidate in the union’s general secretary election, says that workers won’t just "sit and take" the cuts there.

‘We won’t accept cuts’ is message to government from union conferences

Two union conferences last week showed the overwhelming mood to fight the coming onslaught of cuts.

PCS conference round-up

Redundancy scheme Delegates to the PCS conference were buoyed up by the recent court ruling against the previous government’s attempt to change the civil service redundancy compensation scheme.

Outrageous sacking of PCS member

PCS Delegates gave a standing ovation to victimised union rep Jane Brooke before voting unanimously to back her fight for justice.

FBU conference round-up

Lessons from South Yorkshire Delegates to the firefighters’ conference voted to reaffirm the policy of recalling conference if any member faces compulsory redundancy. They won the vote despite opposition from the union’s executive council.

Post workers' conference opposes racist EDL

Delegates to this week’s Communication Workers Union conference reinforced their strong stand against racism and fascism by passing policy against the English Defence League (EDL).

Striking teachers visit BA picket line

British Airways workers entered their third day of strike action today—and they are in a confident mood.

BT workers tell bosses to raise pay or face strike

Workers at British Telecom (BT) will vote on strike action unless bosses raise a paltry 2 percent pay offer by Friday 4 June.

BNP teacher cleared of intolerance despite calling immigrants 'savage animals'

The General Teaching Council (GTC) has cleared a Nazi teacher, who taught at a school with pupils from immigrant backgrounds, of racial and religious intolerance.


International

Crisis in Afghanistan escalates as US deaths pass 1,000

A grim milestone was reached on 18 May—1,000 US troops have been killed in Afghanistan.

Thailand's brutal regime is Western ally in ‘war on terror’

Britain and the US remained silent as 80 Red Shirt protesters were killed and hundreds injured in Thailand over the past three months. Troops violently cleared anti-government protesters out of central Bangkok last week.


Comment

Is the artificial lifeform friend or foe?

Researchers led by controversial scientist Craig Venter last week reported that they had produced the first artificial life-form.

The potential to shut Greece down

The price of the so-called "rescue" of Greece is massive austerity for working people. This is coming up against resistance from the most militant working class in Europe.


Features

The 'justice' system and class power

The law is an instrument of class rule. Last week one judge banned a strike because the number of spoiled ballots in a vote by BA cabin crew wasn’t put on Twitter.

When workers beat the law

Workers have beaten anti-union laws before. The laws are intended to intimidate, but they cannot prevent struggle if they are disobeyed. One key example is the dockers under a Tory government in the 1970s.

A party terrified of workers’ resistance

The Tories have always been loyal to two things—the needs of the ruling class and hostility to workers.

Divided Britain’s growing inequality

If the Tories get away with their huge public spending cuts, they will drive up poverty and unemployment.

John McDonnell and Diane Abbott on where next for the Labour Party?

John McDonnell In the election I managed to increase my majority to 11,000 thanks to all of the hard work put in by campaigners like yourselves.


Reviews

Picasso: art that was part of the fight for peace

Pablo Picasso may be the greatest of modern painters. He founded the Cubist movement, creating a new way of seeing the world.

Euphoria as Omar Souleyman enthralls London

Syrian music sensation Omar Souleyman—topping 500 studio albums—is THE aviator wearing, headscarf-bearing king of inept Syrian pop-folk.

Antifascistas

Newcastle: 22 May–7 June, Newcastle City Library, NE1 8AX. London: 3 July, Travel Inn, Jubilee Gardens, SE1. Manchester: 6–31 August, People’s History Museum, M3 3ER

Ken Loach films online

The films of Ken Loach are being made available for the first time online on YouTube as his new film, "Irish Route", is nominated for a Palme d’Or at the Cannes film festival.

Competition: Win a T-shirt

The Red Stuff Shop has donated a "We are all the children of Migrants" T-shirt for a readers’ competition.


What We Think

Europe's elite has no solution to the crisis

The crisis that nearly led to the collapse of the Euro underlines the fragility of the economic system. The eurozone states have put up 500 billion euros to bail out crisis-ridden economies.

Child rape case exposes flawed system

Two boys, aged just 10 and 11, were found guilty of attempted rape last week.


Other Categories

Leon Kuhn: Shut Heathrow

Tim: Gloves off

Tim's view

Letters

Make our unions more democratic &#8211; not less I was dismayed to read that the Trades Union Congress general council had agreed that in future the annual conference should be every two years.

In their own words

‘Behind some obvious Lib Dem language, the hard-line Tory policies have survived almost precisely intact.’



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