Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker


Issue: 2215

Dated: 21 Aug 2010




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Young people abandoned by the Tories

The Tory government is destroying the future of millions of young people in Britain.


International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other

News

Bosses threaten to sack 4,000 London firefighters

Firefighters in London are set to ballot for industrial action over management’s threat to sack them all.

Video shows the reality of the US housing crisis

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Campaign against closure at art factory

Workers at the ColArt company in Wealdstone, north west London, are fighting plans to close their factory.

Retreat by BAA bosses shows more can be won

The threat of a strike by thousands of workers at six airports terrified the British Airports Authority (BAA) bosses this week.

Runaway train is warning that cuts could mean disaster on Tube

An urgent investigation is underway on the London Underground after a "runaway" train on Friday of last week.

Threat to London mail centres

Royal Mail bosses plan to close two of London’s three giant mail centres and a major delivery office. Some 3,000 jobs could go in the scheme and it would clear the way for privatisation.

Video of runaway train on London Underground

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Jerry Hicks gets on the Unite ballot paper

Left wing activist Jerry Hicks has won enough nominations to get on the ballot paper for the forthcoming Unite general secretary election.

Ministry of Justice cuts exposed

A LEAK from the Ministry of Justice last week revealed that the government wants to cut £2 billion from the department’s budget.

Young people hit hard across the world by the recession

A new report shows the recession is hurting young people across the globe more than any other group.

Stop the racist English Defence League in Bradford

Local opposition is growing to the racist English Defence League’s plan for a racist riot through Bradford on Saturday 28 August.

Competition for jobs rocket

Some of the lowest paid jobs are attracting huge numbers of applications—particularly from young people—with hundreds chasing each job. And most are paying only the minimum wage.

Turmoil in the BNP

Richard Barnbrook, the fascist BNP’s only member on the London Assembly, has resigned the party’s whip to sit as an independent.

Poor youth excluded as education cuts bite

Universities have been told to expect the worst cuts since the 1930s—funding could be slashed by 35 percent over the next five years.

Four riot cops face charges over attack on Babar Ahmed

Four of the Metropolitan Police’s riot squad will appear in court next month to answer charges of actual bodily harm against Babar Ahmed, a south London IT worker.

Southampton library workers strike over cuts

Unison members working in Southampton libraries struck on Friday of last week and Monday of this week over the introduction of volunteers to replace paid workers.

Kirklees workers get ready for cuts battle

Around 8,500 Unison union members working for Kirklees council in West Yorkshire are preparing to ballot for strikes over cuts in jobs and services.

Cameron gives the Green light to big spending cuts

The Tories and the right wing media are combining to ensure the poor pay while the rich get off in the recession.

Hospitals slash care so they can pay privateers

Hospitals have been saddled with so much debt under the government’s Private Finance Initiative (PFI) that they are being forced to cut back on patient care.

Protests pile pressure on Blackburn coalition

A campaign to save a leisure centre has led to turmoil in Blackburn & Darwen council in Lancashire—and threatens to bring down the ruling coalition on the council.

Alan Milburn is new Labour turncoat

The Tory-Liberal coalition has gained another Labour collaborator—former health secretary Alan Milburn.

Victory as journalist is released from detention

African journalist Charles Atangana has been released from detention in Britain in a major victory for refugee rights campaigners.

Tony Blair’s doomsday book

Mass murderer Tony Blair is to donate the ill-gotten gains from his memoirs to a health centre for injured soldiers. But this attempt to launder his blood money won’t wash.

Massive rise in food prices

The latest RPI inflation figure of 4.8 percent, released this week, is a slight dip in the rate—but it is still more than most workers’ pay "rises".

Over a million in hock to lenders

Four times more people are being hooked by crushingly expensive "payday loans" than in 2006, a report has revealed.

BBC bosses on the defensive over pensions

Bosses at the BBC have, in a display of nervousness, been forced to cut their own generous pension scheme after anger exploded amongst staff over attacks on their pensions.

Neath Port Talbot Council trample on democracy

A freedom of information request has revealed that Neath Port Talbot council trampled over democracy in its determination to hand council homes to a private housing company.

In brief

We want more than chicken feed

Activists' diary

Saturday 28 August

Don't deport Vahidi family to Iran

The Home Office plans to deport a 17 year old Manchester College student and his family to Iran on Friday.

Indefinite strike by 1.3 million public sector workers in South Africa

Public services have ground to a halt as over a million South African public sector workers, including some 245,000 teachers, walked out on indefinite strike today (Wednesday) over pay.

Pakistani flood victims die - but US airbase protected

One statement by a Pakistani cabinet minister yesterday about the floods has revealed the way ordinary people’s lives are being sacrificed for profit and US imperialism.

Justice for Sean Rigg: Sat 21 August Memorial Vigil Outside Brixton Police Station 5pm

SEAN RIGG 1968-2008 Second Year Memorial Vigil Outside Brixton Police Station 21 August, 5pm

South African mass strike - send a solidarity message

The strike by over a million South African public sector workers continues into its third day.

UAF backed protest in Bradford goes ahead despite EDL march ban

The Home Office announced on Friday a ban on the racist English Defence League's (EDL) proposed march in Bradford on 28 August.

Do we still need a revolutionary paper?

The internet has opened up new vistas for socialists. At a time when information can be sent all over the world at the click of a button, newspapers can start to feel quite old-fashioned.

Climate campers target oil bankers

The annual Climate Camp starts in Edinburgh this week. It will attract thousands of activists to protest at the destruction of our planet.

Disabled tenants protest in Hastings

Disabled tenants of Amicus Horizon housing association in Hastings demonstrated on Monday against threats of eviction, bullying and a policy of refusing to do repairs for tenants they are in dispute with.

Anti-Tory conference protest is a focus for resistance

Significant meetings of anti-cuts activists took place in Birmingham and Glasgow last week to prepare for the protest at the Tory Party conference in Birmingham on 3 October.

More union branches line up to back Right to Work demonstration

The Eastern Number 4 branch of the Communication Workers Union (CWU), Sheffield Green Party and Rotherham Hospital Unison branch are the latest organisations to back the 3 October protest.


International

Pakistan: Left to die as governments refuse to provide relief

World leaders are still refusing to release funds that could save lives in Pakistan.


Comment

Final whistle not blown in South Africa

After the football World Cup drew to a close, most of the world media’s attention left South Africa—Naomi Campbell and "blood diamonds" aside.

Economy is still on the Big Dipper

SPECULATION ABOUT the prospect of a double-dip recession has become almost obsessive in the financial markets. The US central bank, the Federal Reserve Board, is worried that the American economy might slip back into slump.


Features

Trotsky’s socialism

Seventy years ago this week an agent of Russian dictator Joseph Stalin murdered the exiled Russian revolutionary Leon Trotsky by smashing his skull with an ice pick.

If workers fight, will bosses migrate?

There’s a great myth about the way work is organised today—that workers are power­less because employment is unstable. They say that if anyone dares to challenge the employers, the firms will disappear to another country where wages are lower and workers more flexible.

Planning that would put workers in control

We need a mass movement of workers, public ownership and workers’ control to create a socialist society.


Reviews

The Punishment of Gaza: a fiery condemnation

Gideon Levy is a rare voice of dissidence and opposition in Israel.

Home Movie Roadshow's snapshot of miners’ militancy

Tucked away in the first episode of the BBC’s new series on the history of home movies is some surprising footage of the 1974 miners’ strike.

The Secret in Their Eyes

Set in 1999, this Argentinian film is told in flashback form.

Afro-Beat Airways: West African Shock Waves Ghana & Togo 1972–1978

Lovers of militant grooves will want to seize this fantastic collection of organ-driven Afro-beat, cosmic Afro-funk and raw, psychedelic boogie from West Africa.

Rara in Haiti: Street Music of Haiti

Rara in Haiti: Street Music of Haiti


What We Think

Panorama parrots Israel’s propaganda

Israel’s barbaric attack on the Gaza Freedom Flotilla at the end of May caused outrage around the world. Many more people realised Israel was an aggressor, not a victim.

Chance for climate movement to shine

Chance for climate movement to shine


Other Categories

Jimmy Reid 1932-2010

Jimmy Reid died in hospital last weekend after suffering a brain haemorrhage. He was the best known member the British Communist Party ever had.

Mark Donaldson 1965-2010

I was greatly shocked and saddened when I heard of the sudden death of my good friend Mark.

Tim: 'All in this together'

Leon Kuhn: Expert at making savings

Tim: Close wards

Letters

Squatters show poverty The tabloid press launched into a spiteful attack on poor migrant workers in Britain last week. The Daily Express newspaper ran a front page claiming "Britain’s Migrant Squatter Shambles—city under siege by jobless gangs".

Quotes from this week's news

‘I think what you’re trying to do is stop supermarkets from selling 20 tins of Stella for a fiver. That’s what we’ve got to go after.’



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