Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker


Issue: 2308

Dated: 23 Jun 2012


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No more bailouts for the bankers

Across Europe ordinary people’s money is being used to bail out the bankers and the rich.


International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other

News

Kirklees council workers: 'They say we won't strike. They are wrong.'

Women admin workers in west Yorkshire struck for three days last week—and convinced other workers to come out and support them.

Unison local government leadership push for a summer of consultation

The Unison union will ballot over the local government pensions deal—but it won’t make any recommendation until it has asked members what it should be.

A defiant protest to defend refugees in Glasgow

Over 1,000 people marched in Glasgow last Saturday on a defiant demonstration opposing deportations of refugees and the return of dawn raids.

Millions of children still live in poverty

Child poverty has fallen according to the latest official figures, released last week—but the statistics conceal continuing misery.

Unions strike together to stop Ford bosses' attacks

More than 2,000 engineering and supervision workers struck on Monday of this week against plans to introduce a two-tier workforce at Ford car factories.

Protesting workers vow to fight Coryton plant closure

Over 100 oil refinery workers marched in London on Wednesday of last week in protest at plans to throw them out of work.

Thousands of tax workers set to walk out

All PCS union members in HM Revenue and Customs’ (HMRC) hundreds of offices—some 55,000 workers—are set to hold a one day strike next Monday.

Rail workers call for Olympic bonus

Rail workers in the RMT union on South West Trains are set to be balloted for strikes over Olympic bonuses.

Alternative climate summit prepares for mass protest in Rio

The United Nations (UN) Conference on Sustainability is set to begin in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Wednesday of this week.

Mau Mau veterans fight for justice

The British government is still trying to stop people tortured on its orders during Kenya’s Mau Mau independence war in the 1950s getting compensation.

BMA staff demand healthier pay rise

Around 400 staff at the British Medical Association (BMA) are set to strike over a below-inflation pay offer on Wednesday of this week.

Southwark meeting to defend NHS

Around 60 health workers and activists met at London South Bank University on Saturday to organise against NHS cuts and privatisation.

Strike can halt London's buses

Over 20,000 bus workers were set to walk out on Friday of this week in the first London-wide bus strike since 1982.

Support suspended student protester Owen Holland

A Cambridge student, who was suspended for more than two years for taking part in a protest, will have his appeal heard on Friday.

Furious doctors down tools over pensions robbery

Some 100,000 doctors in the British Medical Association (BMA) are set to join the pensions fight with industrial action on Thursday of this week.

Sheffield recycling workers staying out

Recycling workers in Sheffield are preparing to escalate their strike campaign on Saturday of this week.

Hundreds picket against greedy pie boss

Hundreds picket against greedy pie boss

Unhealthy in call centres

Call centre workers say their working conditions are harming their health

Older people working longer

The number of people working beyond their retirement age has almost doubled since 1993.

Strike to block school academy in Nottinghamshire

Some 30 teachers in the NUT union picketed outside Kimberley School, Nottinghamshire, when they struck on Wednesday and Thursday of last week.

Punished for going on strike

The government plans to punish low paid workers who strike.

‘The Harris Federation has no right to take over our school’ say Downhills strikers

Workers at Downhills Primary School in north London struck on Tuesday of this week against government plans to privatise it.

No access to mental health services

Three quarters of people who have a mental health problem aren’t getting treatment. The Mental Health Policy Group report found that effective therapies exist but aren’t widely available.

Education round up

Campaigners against academies won two victories last week.

Sean Rigg inquest is a battle for justice for those who die in custody

Family, friends and supporters packed into the public gallery at Southwark Coroner’s Court last week for the inquest into the death of Sean Rigg.

Fathers' Day vigils for those who died in custody

Vigils took place across Britain last Sunday to remember those who have died in police custody to coincide with Father’s Day.

Teachers: time to get the vote out

The NUT teaching union will ballot members for action over pensions, pay and workload from Monday of next week.

Tomlinson cop’s manslaughter trial

PC Simon Harwood, accused of killing Ian Tomlinson, began his manslaughter trial on Monday of this week.

Higher education round up

Trade unionists have launched a campaign to defend union activist and lecturer Christine Vie.

Coryton oil workers call refinery protests for Monday

Workers at the threatened Coryton oil refinery near Basildon, Essex, have called three emergency demonstrations for 1pm on Monday of next week.

Striking Spanish miner to address Unite the Resistance conference

A striking miner from Spain is on his way to speak at the Unite the Resistance conference in London this Saturday.

Strikes foil union busting at API

After three one-day strikes at API Foils in Livingstone, bosses have reached an agreement with the workers’ Unite union.

Essex firefighters vote to strike

Fire crews in Essex have voted by two-to-one to strike against frontline cuts and changes to their conditions.

Free Marian Price, say 200 at meeting in Glasgow

Irish republican socialist Bernadette McAliskey addressed a meeting of more than 200 people in Glasgow on Thursday of last week. It was part of a campaign for the release of dissident Irish republican Marian Price.

Unison conference launches fightback over pay

The Unison union’s annual conference has voted to prepare for strikes over pay in the autumn.

Don't let judges stop bus workers from winning

Bosses at three London bus companies won a last minute High Court injunction against the Unite union on Thursday night.

Lively picket lines as bus workers walk out across London

There were lively and confident scenes on bus garage picket lines across London on Friday as workers in the Unite union struck for 24 hours to demand an Olympic bonus payment.

Pictures from London bus strike

'When Boris threatens people, he just makes us more determined'

Jake works as a bus engineer and was outside West Ham bus garage on strike for the first time. "It’s great to see everyone out together," he said.

Spirit of rebellion grips Unite the Resistance conference

The spirit of rank and file rebellion at austerity marked this weekend’s Unite the Resistance conference.

Tax workers walk out against job cuts and privatisation

Some 55,000 civil service workers in HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) struck on Monday against job cuts and privatisation.

'If we had more staff here, we could hold the rich to account'

Len Shelley is assistant branch secretary of the PCS union at the HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) headquarters in Euston Tower, central London.

Coryton workers target Purfleet to save their refinery jobs

Around 100 people protested in Purfleet, Essex, yesterday (Monday) as part of the fight to save the threatened Coryton oil refinery.


International

Daily strikes in Tunisia show rulers are losing support

Things never stand still in Tunisia. In the past weeks exiled dictator Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali was sentenced, in his absence, to ten years imprisonment for unlawful killing. He is hiding from justice in Saudi Arabia.

Greek election result offers no escape from euro crisis

Greece’s parliamentary election results will not resolve the political and economic crisis that is tearing through the country.

French Socialists under pressure following their election victory

France’s Socialist Party won a majority in the 17 June parliamentary elections, its best result since 1981.

Unity against generals' attempted coup in Egypt

The ruling Military Council (Scaf) has launched a number of very serious attacks on the Egyptian Revolution over the last week. The military police can now arrest civilians at will and parliament has been dissolved.

Egyptian military is taking advantage

The people excluded the remnants of the old regime from the election and rejected Ahmad Shafiq at the ballot box. This is important because if Shafiq had won the election this would have led to massive demoralisation.

Thousands march through Rio to demand climate action from UN

Tens of thousands of protesters joined an enormous demonstration through the centre of the Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Wednesday evening to demand economic justice and action over climate change.

Statement from Egypt's Revolutionary Socialists in wake of Mursi's presidential victory

Egyptians heard on Sunday that Mohamed Mursi from the Muslim Brotherhood had won the country’s first presidential election since the fall of the dictator Hosni Mubarak.


Comment

What's the best way to build fighting unions?

For around 6.5 million workers in the UK, being in a union is a recognition that we need organisations to defend us at work. Over 2.5 million of us in the public sector enthusiastically struck together in defence of our pensions on 30 November last year.

We're definitely in this together - LOL!

David Cameron gave evidence to the Leveson inquiry last week. He said, "I can’t remember if it was me or someone else, who suggested, come on, there’s nothing to hide here, just answer the question."


Features

Syria and imperialism

Revolutions are momentous political battles centred on the actions of millions of ordinary people. They are full of surprises and contradictions—and do not follow any prescribed course or formula.

Revolution in the 'progressive' bloc

The revolutionary socialist tradition has always combined a commitment to workers’ revolution with opposition to imperialism.

Daily battle for survival in Greece

The British media reports Greece’s crisis as if it was down to the idleness of Greek workers being supported by a generous Europe. Nikos Loudos is a journalist on Workers Solidarity, Socialist Worker’s sister paper in Greece. He spoke to people about the reality of life under the hammer of austerity.


Reviews

Debt and taxes spell the end of the line for Rangers

One of Scotland’s sporting giants crashed and died on Thursday of last week. HM Revenue & Customs voted against Rangers Football Club’s proposed debt repayment plan. The only alternative is liquidation.

Art of West Africa comes to Manchester's galleries

A festival of art and music from West Africa has arrived in Manchester. We Face Forward draws its title from words uttered by Ghana’s first president Kwame Nkrumah in 1960.

Sheepy Shakespeare will delight young audiences

The Oily Cart company excels in producing theatre for young, neglected audiences—babies, two to four year olds, and young people with profound learning disabilities.

Reviews round-up

From Cable Street to Brick Lane by Phil Maxwell & Haz Hashim5 July, Genesis Cinema, Londonbox office 0870 060 6061


What We Think

Egypt’s revolution hangs in the balance

The revolution in Egypt is at a critical moment. Some commentators in the mainstream media have even declared it finished.

Workers are ready to fight

The debates at this year’s trade union conferences have shown that workers are determined not to let the Tories make them pay for the crisis.


Other Categories

Andy Sharp 1958-2012

Comrade Andy Sharp from Crewe sadly died on 27 May 2012. Andy was a bus driver and a T&G union steward and branch secretary, and was also president of Crewe & District Trades Council for many years.

Tim's view

Tim: Troika

Gay marriage plans show Tory bigotry is alive and well

The Tories want us to believe that they are reformed supporters of lesbian and gay equality.

Quotes from this week's news

‘A Marxist organisation’

How the richest bosses in Britain bankroll the Tories

A quarter of the richest people in Britain are Tory party donors—and they have handed Cameron and co a massive £83 million.

Jubilee windfall buys Middletons’ mansion

Kate Middleton’s parents have splashed out £4.7 million on a new mansion after the queen’s jubilee got the tills ringing at their firm Party Pieces.

Benefits basher’s link to blue baron

More bad news for Newsnight’s political editor Allegra Stratton, whose vicious interview with a woman on benefits sparked outrage.

Fat cat of the week (and other stories)

Our fat cat of the week is Martin Baggs, chief executive of Thames Water.

A&E feels the strain from latest health service cuts

Four out of the eight accident and emergency (A&E) departments in north west London could close within 12 months.

Healthcare in the community does not make up for closures

Supporters of closures often argue that many patients currently going to A&E could be treated better elsewhere.

Tories' private pals target NHS

McKinsey, a US‑based consultancy firm, has picked up NHS contracts worth £5 million in north west London. it is also providing advice on cuts and closures there.



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