Socialist Worker

Socialist Worker

Issue: 2371

Dated: 17 Sep 2013

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Six weeks to stop Tories selling off Royal Mail

Workers are preparing for ‘the fight of their lives’ over privatisation, say Julie Sherry and Annette Mackin

International Comment Features Reviews What We Think Other


Teachers are 'up for action' against Michael Gove

Teachers rallied in London and Nottingham last Saturday in the run-up to regional strikes next month to defend pay, pensions, conditions and education.

UCU announces national pay ballot

The UCU union will ballot its members in universities for strikes over pay. The union served notice on the UCEA employers’ organisation on Tuesday of this week.

Workers ‘have Ardagh Glass bosses on the run’

Bosses of multinational bottle company Ardagh Glass have made concessions to stave off strikes for the second time.

Beer workers strike to defend conditions and jobs

Beer and lager delivery drivers working for Kuehne & Nagel Drinks Logistics (KNDL) at Swansea struck on Wednesday of last week. 

Cop raids target Travellers

Police launched a series of raids targeting Irish Travellers last week. 

Cleaners launch strikes for decent pay

Cleaners on the East Coast Mainline struck on Monday of this week. The RMT union members are employed by ISS.

Wildcat walkout in Glasgow spreads across the city

Social Workers across Glasgow are on unofficial strike. They held a 60-strong union meeting on Monday of this week and voted unanimously to join colleagues who walked out on Friday of last week. And the dispute is spreading.

Victory for students as college reverses niqab ban

Muslim and other students got together and forced a college into a U-turn, writes Helen Salmon

Students are back - and they're taking on the Tories

Students are returning after the summer and are gearing up to protest against the Tories in Manchester on Sunday 29 September.

Hundreds join health rally

Health workers backed a motion of no confidence in their bosses at a meeting at Whipps Cross Hospital on Thursday of last week.

Did cops alter fans’ statements after Hillsborough disaster?

Fans’ families fight for justice as new evidence emerges of a police cover-up, writes Sadie Robinson

Lewisham march to celebrate victory

Up to 1,000 people marched in south east London last Saturday, celebrating a High Court decision overruling plans to slash services at Lewisham hospital.

Inquest starts into police shooting of Mark Duggan

The inquest into the police shooting of Mark Duggan has begun. 

Arrested anti-fascists get together to fight back against police intimidation

A meeting for anti-fascists arrested on the day of a Unite Against Fascism (UAF) protest on 7 September in east London was set for Wednesday of this week.

People's Assemblies launched in Newcastle and Essex

Around 500 people attended the North East People’s Assembly launch in Newcastle last Saturday.

Bus workers strike against pay freeze

Workers picketed the Network Warrington bus depot on Friday of last week, in the first of seven planned strikes against a pay freeze.

Coach makers are ready for strikes

Some 600 workers were set to strike at Britain’s biggest bus and coach manufacturer Alexander Dennis on Thursday and Friday of this week.

Hovis strike - bakers rise up to beat bosses

Striking Hovis workers have stepped up the pressure on Premier Foods’ bosses, using mass pickets to disrupt delivery vans in Wigan this week.

March calls for ban on Arctic drilling

Up to 3,000 people marched to the Shell headquarters in central London last Sunday, demanding a ban on drilling for gas and oil in the Arctic.

Ballots for walkouts at Grangemouth

Workers at the Grangemouth oil refinery near Glasgow are balloting for strikes.

Activists gather for Stop the War AGM

Around 150 delegates from around Britain came together for the Stop the War Coalition (StW) AGM last Saturday in London. 

As Tories attack Royal Mail - the truth about privatisation

The bosses claim that privatisation can help workers and ordinary people.

Thousands set to march with TUC in Manchester on 29 September

Momentum is building for the demonstration against the Tories in Manchester next Sunday 29 September. 

Firefighters' FBU union calls a strike to stop Tory attacks on pensions

The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) has called a four-hour strike on Wednesday of next week in England and Wales in protest at attacks on firefighters’ pensions. 

Protests pile on pressure to scrap the bedroom tax

Politicians in all three parties are struggling under fire to contain the opposition to the bedroom tax.

Lib Dems keep on digging

The Liberal Democrats struggled to put a brave face on their ongoing decline at their annual conference in Glasgow this week.

News round-up

Cuts to sexual health services will send the number of sexual diseases and unplanned pregnancies soaring according to charities.

Glasgow social workers' unofficial action wins

Social workers in Glasgow have taken unofficial action and won.


Indefinite strikes spread in Greek sackings battle

High school teachers across Greece began an all-out strike on Monday of this week. Almost all schools were shut and over 90 percent of teachers took part. More than 30,000 marched in central Athens.

Obama’s Syria deal with Russia shows the limits of US power

US president Barack Obama has stepped back from his threat to bomb Syria. The US and Russia signed an accord in Geneva last Saturday. 

200,000 join unprecedented march in Poland

Up to 200,000 trade unionists marched in Warsaw  last Saturday against the government’s austerity polices.

Crackdown on teachers' camp in Mexico

Riot police attacked striking teachers in Zocalo, the central square of Mexico city, on Friday of last week.

Mass march in Paris to defend pensions

Some 370,000 people marched in Paris on Tuesday of last week on a day of strikes against plans to make workers pay billions more for their pensions.

Defend Greek anti-fascist Petros Constantinou from second prosecution

The Greek government has begun a second attempt to prosecute Petros Constantinou, an Athens councillor and coordinator of the Movement Against Racism and the Fascist Threat (Keerfa).

Protesters take to the streets over the killing of anti-fascist rapper in Greece

Protesters filled the streets of Greece's major cities this evening, Wednesday, over the murder of anti-fascist rapper Pavlos Fyssas by a Golden Dawn member.


Mars - the latest arena for capitalist competition?

John Parrington is excited by a new plan to send humans to Mars—but warns that our rulers want to use it for their own ends

Labour - still shying away from fighting the bosses

Labour’s leaders are worried. Their cunning plan was to sit back and do nothing while the Tories attacked, hoping that the Tories’ resulting unpopularity would get them back into office. 


Can unions bring down the system?

Syndicalist unions committed to revolution flourished during the early 20th century. Ralph Darlington examines what they stood for—and their limitations

Down with the union - support Scottish independence

A year from now people in Scotland will vote on independence. Dave Sherry says a yes vote in the referendum is a chance to put forward a socialist vision that can expose the limitations of nationalism

We need a radical vision for Scotland

The Common Weal Project, set up by the left wing Jimmy Reid Foundation thinktank, offers one of the few practical visions of what independence might be like. 

Scottish independence vote is against nuclear weapons

The government’s commitment to nuclear weapons shows that the attacks on welfare are ideological. There is no austerity for weapons of mass destruction. 


InRealLife - how teenagers have learned to live online

New documentary InRealLife asks if immersing young people in the internet is a good thing. Ken Olende thinks it raises more questions than it answers

Library of Birmingham - a stunning showpiece but still shaped by the cuts

Birmingham’s new ten?storey, £189 million, civic library opened last week. It is an awesome sight, combining open study spaces, stunning views and beautiful roof gardens. 

Reviews round-up

Broken Hands: a tribute to Victor Jara | Marx in Soho | Les Invisibles

What We Think

After attacks on the veil - it's a woman's right to choose what to wear

Muslim women who choose to wear the face veil or niqab are facing a new tide of bigotry. Some politicians declare that it should be illegal for Muslim women to cover their faces. 

March for a fightback

When workers fight back against the Tories and the bosses, they can win. 

Other Categories

Ken Cross 1944 - 2013

Socialists in South Wales are saddened by the death of Ken Cross, after a long and painful illness.

Scott Williams 1993-2013

Scott Williams has died at the age of 19. 


I want to let your readers know of a recent victory we’ve had in Kirkcaldy Axe the Bedroom Tax campaign. 

Things they say

The week in quotes

MPs’ latest expenses scam is strictly a family affair

MPs claimed a record £98.1 million on expenses last year. The inflation-busting 10 percent rise added £9 million to the expenses bill.

We're working class and we know it, finds British Attitudes survey

Reports of the death of class consciousness have been greatly exaggerated according to the latest British Social Attitudes survey, says Sadie Robinson

Yes to unions, no to banks

People are more favourable towards trade unions than they are towards politicians, banks or newspapers. 

More open attitudes to sex

Nearly half of those surveyed agreed that homosexuality is “not wrong at all”—compared to just 17 percent in 1983.

Most people say, the rich are too rich

A huge majority— more than eight in ten—say the income gap between rich and poor is too big. This is up from three quarters in 2010.

Job losses change attitudes

The number of people who think those out of work could find a job “if they really wanted one” has fallen. 

Politicians fail to inspire us

Some 21 percent didn’t identify with any political party. 

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