Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker

Issue: 2332

Dated: 08 Dec 2012

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No pain for the richest in Osborne's unequal Britain

George Osborne’s economic plans have left the economy tanking and the welfare state damaged. His autumn statement comes as inequality in Britain looms large.

International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other


Bristol marches against bosses' plan for NHS regional pay

Over 1,000 health workers and activists protested in Bristol last Saturday against regional pay. Radiographers marched with physiotherapists, nurses, ward clerks, medical secretaries, estates staff and midwives.

Health news round-up

Survey bound to support closure NHS North west London has claimed it has majority popular support for plans to close four local A&Es. Some 5,000 people marched through Ealing against the plan in September.

Arriva bus drivers strike for pay rise in north London

Bus drivers picketed their garages across north London last week. Over 40 striking bus workers were outside Stamford Hill garage on Thursday.

Eddie Stobart drivers go all-out over sackings

Lorry drivers in Doncaster have called an all-out strike from Thursday of this week and a demonstration at their distribution centre on Saturday.

RMT train cleaners walk out against shoddy conditions

Around 50 striking train cleaners employed by ISS on East Coast Mainline picketed at King’s Cross station in London on Friday of last week.

Union exposes deadly track gap

The RMT rail union has released a shocking picture of a 12 centimetre gap in the track of the East Coast Mainline at Colton Junction, south of York. Normal running speeds are 125 mph in the area. The picture was taken at the beginning of last week.

Postal workers' boycott may challenge Royal Mail privatisation

Postal workers in the CWU union could refuse to deliver post sent via anyone other than Royal Mail in the new year.

Thousands of civil service workers walk out in strikes and protests

Over 8,000 workers in the Department for Transport struck across Britain on Friday of last week against job losses and office closures.

Dunston primary teachers strike over intrusive appraisals schemes

Teachers at Dunston primary school in Chesterfield held a two-day strike last week over an "intrusive" appraisal scheme and observations.

Time's up for Nazi MEPs

Over 70 people attended the North West Unite Against Fascism (UAF) regional conference in Liverpool last Sunday, supported by many of the region’s trade unions.

Third strike for legal workers

Lawyers in Scotland struck on Monday of this week against planned cuts to legal aid. The action hit courts in Falkirk, Aberdeen, Forfar, Dundee, Arbroath, Kirkcaldy, Dunfermline and Alloa.

Reports round-up

Action on the menu in West Midlands About 1,200 workers at factories in West Bromwich and Wolverhampton in the West Midlands are being balloted for industrial action, including strikes. They are members of the Unite union employed by the 2 Sisters Food Group.

Rotherham result shows anger at cuts and danger posed by right

Labour won a by-election in Rotherham last week—but the vote showed the danger that right wing parties pose.

News round-up

Disabled man is left behind Wheelchair user Geoff Meeghan was left on the second floor with his carer when an Atos centre was evacuated for a fire alarm.

Workers angry at victimisation of Mid Yorkshire NHS striker

Talks to end the long running dispute over "downbanding" at Mid Yorkshire hospital NHS Trust have been interrupted by the bosses’ attempt to victimise a striker.

Osborne: Bonanza for bosses, cuts for the rest of us

George Osborne announced that his plan for the economy wasn’t working even on his own terms in his somewhat wintery autumn statement today, Wednesday.

Strikers and activists protest against Osborne's new cuts plan

Hundreds protested in central London last night, Wednesday, against Tory chancellor George Osborne and his latest round of cuts.

Administrator faces public anger at plans to shut Lewisham A&E

Around 500 people tried to make themselves heard at a public consultation on the closure of Lewisham A&E last Tuesday night.


Mursi's constitutional changes spark new crisis in Egypt

Events are moving at breathtaking speed in Egypt once again.

France: Rural guerrilla warfare divides the government

François Hollande of France’s Socialist Party (similar to Britain’s Labour Party) was elected president in May. Now his ratings are down to 36 percent—a record low for a new president.

We're lovin' burger strike

Fast food workers across New York struck on Thursday of last week, demanding a pay rise and the right to join unions.

Banks loot Greece again with bailout that hands them £23bn

The new bailout agreement with Greece amounts to looting.

Pre-trial hearing held for US army private Bradley Manning

After more than 900 days in custody US army private Bradley Manning finally got to testify at his army pre-trial hearing in Maryland last week.

Rifts open up over Israel

Israel has said it will restart its illegal settlement building programme in the West Bank, despite being condemned by United Nations (UN) members.

Indefinite teachers strike shows power of Slovakian workers

The ongoing Slovak teachers’ dispute has demonstrated the militant potential of the long dismissed Slovak working class.

Tamil students and lecturers strike in Jaffna against repression

Teachers and students in Jaffna, Sri Lanka, are striking against the arrest and interrogation of leading Tamil activists from their university.

Cairo rocked by mass protests against Mursi's draft constitution

There are hundreds of thousands of people on the streets today, Friday. People are marching on the presidential palace right now, while the army is trying to close off all access.


Leveson's press regulation plans will only protect the rich

Lord Leveson argues that "far from holding power to account, the press is exercising unaccountable power which nobody holds to account".


Blacklisting: Ian Kerr reveals how he spied on workers and the left

The man who blacklisted construction workers justified ruining their lives because "they had other agendas" when they raised health and safety issues.

How Victor Serge kept the flame of the Russian Revolution alive

Victor Serge was a revolutionary anarchist who went to Russia in 1919 and joined the communists. His articles, books and novels capture the revolutionary experience in the first half of the 20th century.

Leveson report lets the press, politicians and police off the hook

The report issued by Lord Justice Leveson last week has done its job effectively.


Silver Linings Playbook: romantic comedy can lift dark clouds away

In this sweet dry comedy two people with serious mental health needs find ways to survive and be happy. Tiffany was severely depressed before her husband died and she copes now by getting drunk and sleeping with lots of different people.

BBC's take on causes of poverty

The BBC has been running a documentary series that asks why poverty exists.

Reviews round-up

Karl Marx walking tour What better way to spend a crisp winter morning in the capital than following in the footsteps of Karl Marx?

What We Think

Tories would struggle if workers fought back with strikes

George Osborne’s latest statement won’t ease the pain of millions of working class people targeted by the Tories’ austerity attacks.

A delightful parasite

Socialist Worker is delighted to learn that yet another royal scrounger is on the way.

Other Categories

Colin Tipton (1940-2012)

Many comrades will be sad to learn of the death last week of Colin Tipton after a decades-long battle with MS.

Tim's view


Tim: Morning sickness


Cyril Smith case exposes double standards People in Rochdale have been shocked by the revelations that former MP Cyril Smith abused boys in the 1970s. But the establishment, including police officers and senior politicians, knew what was going on.

Quotes from this week's news

‘On Day of Solidarity with Palestinians, Ban Ki-moon stresses urgency of reaching 1-state solution’

Gun from Iraq makes a hero, but kids with knives go to jail

Sergeant Danny Nightingale became the hero of the press last week for illegally possessing a firearm.

Underemployment: the struggling workers hidden by jobs figures

Over three million people work- ing in Britain are struggling to survive on the pay they receive each month—and want to work more hours than they can get. That’s the finding of a new report from the Office of National Statistics (ONS).

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