Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker


Issue: 2280

Dated: 30 Nov 2011




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All out to win!

Wednesday 30 November is a day socialist and trade union militants have longed for. After decades in the wilderness, N30 signals the return of mass working class resistance in Britain.


International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other

News

Exposing the government’s lies about public sector pensions

There are hundreds of reasons why workers are walking out together against the Tories on 30 November. But the key issue that has united the unions is the government attack on public sector pensions.

Danny Alexander’s dodgy figures

As the truth about pensions has leaked out, ministers have started to panic. They have reacted with spin and bluster to try and conceal the real effects of their proposals.

Who created the budget deficit?

The Tories, like many governments around the world, are hell bent on forcing ordinary people to pay for a crisis they didn’t create. They say the budget deficit—the gap between government revenues and spending—is too high.

Solidarity greetings to strikers from Britain and internationally

Kama Abu Aita, president, Egyptian Federation of Independent Trade Unions

Tories panic as workers fight back

The government is in a panic about this week’s public sector strikes. Ministers have spent the past week bleating on about the impact that the action will have.

What about private sector workers?

Tory ministers meet any complaint about their assault on public sector pensions with the line: "But it’s worse for workers in the private sector." But public sector workers’ pensions are not responsible for poor pensions in the private sector.

Ministers look for someone to blame

The government has lashed out at pretty much everyone in its attempt to drive through an assault on workers in Britain. Sometimes it says that "greedy" public sector workers are the reason that cuts must be made. At other times the Tories lay into people who can’t find work or those on benefits.

‘There’s an exciting mood around the strikes’

If I don’t strike today and lose a day’s pay for doing so, I’ll lose a day’s pay a month every year thanks to the Tory attacks.

Which unions are going on strike on Wednesday 30 November?

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Walkouts hit privatised academies

Teachers at Kingswinford School in Dudley struck on Thursday of last week in protest at plans to turn it into an academy.

Pickets win support in Otley

Teachers at Prince Henry’s Grammar School in Otley, Leeds, struck for three days last week.

Industrial round up

Paddy Brennan gets reinstated The Unite union convenor at Honda in Swindon, Paddy Brennan, has been reinstated—four months after being suspended on what workers described as "trumped up charges".

Anti-academies conference meets

Some 50 trade unionists and campaigners met at the North West anti academies conference in Manchester last Saturday.

Osborne’s plan: austerity, but only for the workers

Britain could be heading for another recession—the infamous double dip—according to predictions expected this week from the government’s Office for Budget Responsibility.

Protesting electricians occupy Gratte Brothers headquarters

Electricians occupied the London headquarters of construction firm Gratte Brothers on Wednesday of last week. The workers are fighting to stop building bosses tearing up their national JIB agreement and slashing wages by up to 35 percent.

Women hit hardest–but millions are fighting back

Every austerity measure the Tories push through seems designed to hit women hardest.

Youth contract won’t help us

The government has come up with a bright idea to tackle youth unemployment—a new "youth contract".

Alan Ritchie plans court injunction against Ucatt

Former Ucatt union general secretary Alan Ritchie intends to mount a High Court injunction to halt the union’s current leadership ballot.

Where is rich’s tax?

One Hyde Park, the world’s most expensive block of flats, is home to the richest of the super-rich.

John’s Occupy London diary

"Over the past week we’ve been given a date for Occupy London’s court date. This is part of the City of London’s attempts to evict the camp.

BBC strikes called off

Unions balloting workers in the BBC have called off upcoming strikes. The NUJ, Bectu and Unite unions balloted together against plans for a wholesale attack on the service.

Tories’ hot air on climate

The latest UN climate change conference began in Durban, South Africa, on Monday of this week. But the Tories don’t seem too concerned.

Edinburgh privatisation halted

Campaigners have scored an important victory against the attempt to privatise a large swathe of council services in Edinburgh.

Manchester protest delivers solidarity to Bahrain medics

Supporters of Bahraini medical staff who have been detained and tortured for tending to anti-regime protesters held a solidarity demonstration outside the Manchester Royal Infirmary last week.

News in brief

Tories burn ‘heretic’ Obama Tory students at St Andrews University in Fife have been caught burning an effigy of US president Barack Obama.

Cable’s plan spells trouble for employment tribunals

Business secretary Vince Cable announced government plans for employment law on Tuesday of last week.

Anger at Metropolitan Police tactics on deaths in custody demo

Campaigners challenged Metropolitan Police commissioner Bernard Hogan&#8209;Howe last Thursday over "aggressive and degrading treatment" at a recent demonstration against deaths in custody.

Stop riot evictions in Wandsworth

Campaigners in Battersea, south London, are holding a public meeting to oppose Wandsworth council’s plans to evict the family of Daniel Sartain-Clarke from their council flat.

‘No misconduct’ by Smiley Culture officers, police watchdog rules

The Independent Police Complains Commission (IPCC) has cleared police officers who were present at the death of Smiley Culture of misconduct.

George Osborne’s insult to every striker

George Osborne spat into the faces of millions of workers today.

Electricians at Balfour Beatty vote by 81 percent to strike

Electricians at Balfour Beatty have voted overwhelmingly to strike against bosses’ attempts to destroy their terms and conditions.

Student protester wins Millbank trial

Sara El Sheekh, a former student at Kings College University, has been found not guilty of violent disorder after being arrested in connection to the student demonstration at Millbank on 10 November last year.

Exclusive: Firm linked to Tories provided tear gas canisters used in Tahrir Square

A British arms company with links to the Tory party has produced some of the tear gas canisters used against protesters in Tahrir Square, Cairo.

Why won’t the Labour Party back strikes?

As millions strike against vicious Tory attacks, many will be expecting the Labour Party—which is supposed to be the official opposition—to support their fightback.

London school called scabs to break strike

Management at an east London school are running an open scabbing operation to try and break a strike.


International

Workers step up the struggle in Portugal

Workers in Portugal’s two main union federations joined one of the biggest general strikes in the country’s history last Thursday.

Nato attack on Pakistan base provokes fury

Nato’s attack on a Pakistan military base on Friday night has led to a huge crisis.

Egypt in revolt against army

Elections began in Egypt this week as mass demonstrations against the military regime clash daily with security forces in Cairo and every major city.

Ahdaf Soueif: ‘This is revolution, phase two’

‘The new government is a joke. People are more determined than ever that Scaf should not be in government.

Greek power workers defiant after arrests

Fifteen power workers in Greece were arrested last week after occupying their workplace.

Workers across Europe must unite against austerity

This week is special for workers across Europe.


Comment


Features

Life after capitalism: alternatives to market tyranny

We live in a world where the market decides what we produce, how we produce it, and how products are allocated. How else could we resolve these issues, if not through the market?

Egypt - the battle for the revolution

A few miles north of Cairo’s Tahrir Square, Manshiyet al-Bakri Hospital is an unremarkable concrete building. Around a thousand outpatients pass through here every day, mostly drawn from the northern Cairo suburb of Heliopolis.

‘We’re not going to wait for the economy to fix itself.'

"Since the revolution there is a sense that we’re not going to wait for the economy to fix itself without us thinking about what it is we need from the economy.

The story of the Egyptian Revolution so far

Ten months ago millions of Egyptians rose up in a mighty revolution and told their tyrant to go.

Interview with Owen Jones: Strikes can end media’s contempt

One of the year’s most popular political books was "Chavs: The Demonisation of the Working Class" by Owen Jones.

We have won before - and we will win again

Ford/Visteon workers occupy factories 2009 We don’t have to go back decades to find important workers’ victories.

The movies strike back!

Much of the media ignore strikes and most movies rarely show working people other than as stereotypes.


Reviews

Resistance is funereal in South Wales

From Philip K Dick’s classic novel The Man in the High Castle through to a recent episode of Channel 4’s Misfits, alternative histories of the Second World War have long fascinated audiences.

The riots remembered

The Riots, by Gillian Slovo, is well worth an outing to the Tricycle theatre.


What We Think


Other Categories

Tim's view

Letters

My five weeks working as a slave for Tesco I worked as a slave at Tesco for five weeks for no money, and I couldn’t get out of it—because I’m unemployed.

Quotes of the week

‘The main thrust of the briefing was that voters have no idea what the party wants, or what it stands for’



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