Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker

Issue: 2316

Dated: 18 Aug 2012

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Let's hit Cameron's crumbling coalition

After the Olympics athletes went for gold, David Cameron and Nick Clegg were hoping some of the shine would rub off on them.

International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other


Time is fast running out for threatened Remploy workers

Between Thursday and Saturday of this week the government will create the latest victims in its war against disabled people. Around 2,000 workers at Remploy which provides work for disabled people are threatened with redundancy.

Job Centre Plus workers strike in face of management tactics

Some 6,000 Job Centre Plus call centre workers struck this Monday in a battle over conditions.

20 October TUC demo: 'We want to make this one even bigger'

"My Unison branch has booked 100 seats on a regionally organised train. We want to take more people than we did on 26 March last year. The cuts in the NHS are no longer a worry, but a reality. Workers don't want to continue to pay.

Protest to demand justice for Kingsley Burrell Brown

Thousands of people are expected to join a march demanding justice for Kingsley Burrell Brown in Birmingham on Saturday.

Camden traffic wardens strike back against poverty pay

Traffic wardens in Camden, north London, showed their determination to win decent pay as they struck for three days last week. Their rage was aimed at NSL, the private contractor that employs them.

G20 pathologist Freddy Patel branded 'dishonest' by report

Disgraced pathologist Dr Freddy Patel has been found to have made 68 mistakes in his post-mortem of Ian Tomlinson.

News round-up

UK faces court over kill list Britain’s role in supplying information to the US for their "kill list" is going to be challenged in court. An Afghan man who lost five of his relatives in a targeted missile strike has started proceedings against the Ministry of Defence and the Serious Organised Crime Agency.

Health and safety cuts to hit building workers who get cancer

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is making a bureaucratic change that could have long term effects on workers’ health.

Chelmsford set to defy EDL

Activists in Chelmsford were set to defend the city from the English Defence League (EDL) this Saturday. United Chelmsford, a local grassroots group, was organised to oppose them.

Fun and games for hated Paralympic sponsor Atos

Disabled activists and supporters are organising a week of protests during the Paralympics this month, against the Games’ main sponsor Atos Healthcare.

Local government: vote NO in unions' pension ballot

The ballots over the local government pension scheme (LGPS) close this week and next in the Unison, GMB and Unite unions. Workers should vote to reject it.

Construction workers vow to protest against Crown House

A hundred construction workers gathered at Conway Hall in central London last Saturday to discuss the next steps in their campaign.

No inquiry over Glasgow asylum seeker deaths, rules Crown Office

The Crown Office has decided it is "not in the public interest" to hold a fatal accident inquiry into the deaths of three asylum seekers in Glasgow.

Roma victims remembered as racist violence returns

Romanian Roma and others gathered at the Hyde Park Holocaust Memorial in central London on Friday two weeks ago.

HM Revenue & Customs job dispute at crossroads

An emergency HM Revenue & Customs group meeting of the PCS union took place on Monday 13 August to discuss an offer in a dispute over job losses and privatisation.

Firefighters hold midnight strike in Essex

Firefighters in Essex struck for three hours on Saturday night last week. The FBU members are fighting job cuts in the county.

London NHS activists plans demos against hospital closures

Activists have been building three big demos in defiance of planned A&E and hospital closures across London. This is in the run up to the national TUC demonstration on 20 October.

Reports round-up

Rail workers’ West Coast ballot The RMT transport union is preparing to ballot its members on the West Coast intercity rail route over threatened cuts. The union expects First Group to take over the route from Virgin trains. It fears that this could result in 800 job losses as the firm restructures the service.

Exclusive: EDL's Alan Lake loses his job at development bank

The man known as Alan Lake, a key strategist and funder behind the racist English Defence League (EDL) is out of his job at a major international development bank.

Anger at Rolls Royce's plan to shut historic East Kilbride factory

Rolls Royce announced plans to shut down its East Kilbride plant last Thursday.

London protest against massacre of strikers in South Africa

Some 70 people gathered in central London to protest at the massacre of at least 34 striking miners in South Africa

Manchester's battle to remember the Peterloo Massacre

Statues of bankers and politicians pepper the town squares in Manchester. But the city does not have a monument or memorial to the Peterloo Massacre of 16 August 1819.


Elections called as Quebec students’ Red Square revolt deepens

Quebec’s student-led "Red Square" movement, which started in February, has sparked the greatest social unrest seen anywhere in Canada for decades.

'The Syrian regime is targeting the poorest areas from the air'

Battle lines in Syria’s second city of Aleppo have, for the moment, become entrenched.

Analysis: Syria's rebels organise despite brutal repression

Recent defections from Bashar al-Assad’s government show that it is crumbling. It can only hang on by brutally crushing the popular uprising.

Egypt: Mursi sacks military chief to head off growing pressures

Egypt’s president Mohammed Mursi has sacked Field Marshal Mohammed Hussain Tantawi, head of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (Scaf).

Greece's government of cuts rounds up 8,000 migrants

The Greek government is cracking down on migrants as the economy tanks. Greece’s economy shrank by 6.2 percent in the last quarter, it was announced—even more than expected by the European Commission.

Africa round-up

Ugandan LGBT march defies the police Almost 100 people joined the first LGBT Pride march in Uganda in east Africa, despite homosexuality being illegal there.

No safe exit for the murderous military council

The masses of the Egyptian people came out on 25 January 2011 to demand the fall of the regime and everything it represented in terms of tyranny, oppression and dependency. Through their steadfastness and the blood of their martyrs, they were able to get rid of the regime’s head Hosni Mubarak.

Slaughter at South Africa's Marikana mine: the bloody politics of platinum

Striking South African mineworkers were gunned down by police on Thursday. Charlie Kimber looks at events leading up to the massacre—and the business interests behind it

Putin jails Pussy Riot activists and cracks down on opposition protest

Three members of the Russian punk band Pussy Riot were sentenced to two years in a prison colony by a Moscow court today, Friday.


This coalition government is failing at both of its aims

David Cameron and Nick Clegg are kidding themselves if they think the undeniable success of the London Olympics will allow them to "relaunch" their coalition government.


China Crisis: Bo Xilai, corruption and looming economic slowdown

The fall of prominent Chinese politician Bo Xilai earlier this year exposed the depths of corruption in China’s ruling class. Much of the media here is focusing on his wife, Gu Kailai, who last week stood trial for murdering a British businessman.

When movements take up arms

For many, popular uprisings go wrong the moment those fighting back pick up a gun. Any sign of "militarisation" marks a turning point where a brilliant rebellion turns into a tragic civil war.


Offender: a failed smash-and-grab raid on last summer's riots

The trailer for Offender may lead you to believe that this film has much to do with last year’s urban rebellions. However, the riots are only used as an enabler for a poor prison revenge film.

Robert Golden's Home: captured moments from workers' lives

Robert Golden documents working class communities with streams of pictures that beautifully home in on moments of everyday life.

Reviews round-up

Practical Electronica 26 August, 7.45pm, Glasgow Film Theatre, £7/£5.50

TV review: Dispatches fails to reveal any useful dole tricks

Last night’s Channel 4 Dispatches documentary promised to reveal the "tricks of the dole cheats" that apparently "make it easy to cheat the system".

What We Think

A generation's dreams are shredded by the Tories

The logic of the market—of privatisation and competition—is the Tories’ guiding light. But you only have to look at the future facing young people to see where this leads.

The rich start to panic

The media is full of dire judgments on the state of the British economy. Mervyn King, the Governor of the Bank of England, says nothing is going to get better fast. He admits the recovery will be "a long, slow process".

Other Categories

Tim's view


Tim: Playing fields


Legal setback for workfare schemes Congratulations to Cait Reilly and Jamieson Wilson who took the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to court over the workfare scheme. Judge Mr Justice Foskett rejected their claim that the scheme was unlawful last week.

Quotes from this week's news

‘Logistically and practically impossible’

Tory promises on Olympic affordable housing crumble

The Tories told us that the Olympics would create affordable homes for thousands of ordinary people in London. How’s that working out?

Both coalition parties are haemorrhaging members

The coalition has a hidden crisis. The membership of both its parties is in freefall. The Liberal Democrats have lost a quarter of their members in just one year.

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