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Archive for April 2008

1 April 2008

spotFrance 1968 - Month of revolution

Speaking tour: 10 million French workers on strike May 1968.

1 April 2008

spot10 million workers occupied the factories. Can it happen today?

France 1968 - month of revolution. Brutal police repression of student demonstrations. Within days, 10 million French workers are on strike.

1 April 2008

spotNo headline set

France 1968 - month of revolution. Brutal police repression of student demonstrations. Within days, 10 million French workers are on strike. Factories...

2 April 2008

spotVictory shows campaigning can save out NHS!

YEARS OF battling by health campaigners at Horton Hospital, Banbury, to save maternity and children's services threatened with downgrading, have won the hospital a reprieve...

2 April 2008

spotTube workers strike to defend network safety

Bob Crow, rail union RMT general secretary, announced at a press conference on 29 March that RMT and TSSA London Underground members would take 72 hours of continuous strike action from 6:30pm on Sunday 6 April, writes Greg Maughan.

2 April 2008

spotShelter staff ask for support

Shelter staff are still in dispute with management over cuts to pay and conditions...

2 April 2008

spotUSA elections: Break with the two parties of big business!

ON 24 February, Ralph Nader declared he was running for President to challenge the corporate stranglehold over US politics, writes Philip Locker, Socialist Alternative, USA.

2 April 2008

spot"Halve your expenses and save our post offices"

SAVE OUR Post Offices (SOPO) campaigners have scored a first-stage victory by forcing Gloucestershire county council (GCC) to consider an 'Essex type' rescue plan for the 27 post offices facing closure in the county, writes Chris Moore, Save Our Post Offices campaign.

2 April 2008

spotCapitalism gambles with our lives

FSA Northern Rock report: WHEN NORTHERN Rock collapsed last year, the Financial Services Authority (FSA) set up an internal review of its regulation of the bank, writes Kevin Parslow.

2 April 2008

spotJaguar/Land Rover: Uncertain future for workers

INDIAN CONGLOMERATE Tata has bought Jaguar & Land Rover from Ford for £1.15 billion - half the price Ford originally paid for the businesses, writes Rob Williams, Convenor, Swansea Visteon Plant.

2 April 2008

spotEditorial: For a 35-hour week with no loss of pay

WITH 2,000 job losses projected out of a total workforce of 6,000 at Northern Rock, together with one third of all jobs in the financial sector going, the shadow of unemployment returns once more to haunt working-class areas...

2 April 2008

spotFight back against the Unison witch-hunt!

Four members of Unison who are also Socialist Party members are to face a Unison disciplinary hearing following the distribution of a leaflet at last year's Unison conference, writes Jane James.

2 April 2008

spot1848: year of revolution

...and publication of Marx and Engels’ Communist Manifesto "The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win." This ringing battle cry was issued 160 years ago by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels in their Communist Manifesto.

2 April 2008

spotID cards: No to students being used as guinea pigs!

Home Secretary Jacqui Smith recently announced plans for ID cards to be introduced on a 'voluntary' basis for certain groups, including students, writes Steve Sweeney, Cambridge Socialist Students.

2 April 2008

spotAirports: Expanding profits at our expense

TWO HUNDRED flights cancelled in three days, 20,000 bags left behind and a three-hour wait to re-claim baggage on arrival, writes Mark Pickersgill.

2 April 2008

spotThe devastating effects of biofuels

Heavily promoted by Bush and Blair as a carbon neutral alternative to fossil fuels, biofuels are now being questioned over their environmental impact on rain forests and on food supplies...

2 April 2008

spotKazakhstan socialist jailed for protesting

AINUR KURMANOV, a well-known leader of Kazakhstan Socialist Resistance, has again been sent to jail for ten days on an administrative charge...

2 April 2008

spotNational Union of Students rejects constitutional changes

IN A welcome development, the National Union of Students has rejected (by 20 votes) a proposed new constitution, which would have slashed democratic representation in the NUS...

2 April 2008

spotNUJ Members fight attacks on jobs and conditions

National Union of Journalists conference: The problems being faced by journalists at work and possibly within the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) appear to be intensifying. An NUJ member writes.

2 April 2008

spotTeachers vote to strike

In brief: Teachers' union NUT members have voted 3:1 to strike on 24 April over pay. The government are trying to force through a below-inflation pay rise, angering...

2 April 2008

spotNational Shop Stewards Network second conference

Saturday 28 June, 11.30-4.30 Speakers include: Bob Crow RMT, Mark Serwotka PCS, Brian Caton POA, plus shop stewards from disputes around the country. Delegates' fee: £5.

2 April 2008

spotFrom Russia: French and Russian master paintings 1870-1925 from Moscow and St Petersburg

Review: Henri Matisse's painting The Dance, 1910 adorns tube stations and advertising billboards across London...

2 April 2008

spotEnd Labour's 'them and us' society

You could not make it up. Disgraced former Northern Rock chief executive Adam Applegarth will get a payout of £760,000!

8 April 2008

spot

Support the campaign to defend the 4

Defend democracy

Public meeting

Tuesday 15 April 7.30pm
Friends Meeting House, Euston Road, London WC1

Lobby of the disciplinary hearing

Show your opposition to these attacks and give support to the four as the hearings begin

Tuesday 22 April 8.30am
Holiday Inn, Regents Park, Carburton Street, London W1 5EE

8 April 2008

spotLondon elections: working class alternative needed

On Thursday 1 May, Londoners will be voting for the Mayor of London and Greater London Assembly (GLA). London Socialist Party secretary, Paula Mitchell, explains the political ideas on offer.

8 April 2008

spotSocialist Party: a clear difference from 'free market' policies

Lewisham Socialist Party campaigning against health cuts, photo Chris Newby

Lewisham Socialist Party campaigning against health cuts, photo Chris Newby


Lewisham/Greenwich: LAST MONTH Socialist Party members in Lewisham and Greenwich went on a demonstration against cutbacks at Queen Mary hospital, Sidcup, writes James Kerr, Lewisham Socialist Party.

8 April 2008

spotExposing daylight robbery in Lincoln!

AROUND 50 people attended a meeting in Lincoln where Lincolnshire Police Authority tried to justify the increase in their council tax precept by a massive 78.9%, (see The Socialist 526), writes Marc Glasscoe, Socialist Party Lincoln.

8 April 2008

spotNUT strike: No more pay cuts!

24 April strikes: National Union of Teachers (NUT) members across England and Wales will be joining the first national teachers' strike for twenty years on 24 April, writes Martin Powell-Davies, convenor Socialist Party Teachers.

8 April 2008

spotUnison health conference: Reject the pay sell-out!

Delegates to the Unison health conference will be meeting from 14-16 April, at a time when the union is consulting on a three-year pay deal...

8 April 2008

spotDefend the 4: Defend democracy in Unison

Four members of the trade union, Unison, all members of the Socialist Party, are facing disciplinary charges from their union with disciplinary hearings taking place from 22 to 24 April, writes Jane James.

8 April 2008

spotZimbabwe: Mugabe plans to steal election

ZIMBABWE'S RULING Zanu-PF party has called for a recount of the votes from the 29 March presidential election - even though the electoral commission has still, after more than one week, to release the figures! Dave Carr writes.

8 April 2008

spotOlympic Games: Chinese regime fans the flames of protest

PRO-TIBETAN demonstrators disrupted the procession of the Olympic torch through London (above) , last Sunday, despite a huge police and security presence...

8 April 2008

spotPerks for MPs - Bonuses for the bosses - Cutbacks for us!

LAST WEEK 'Stormin' Gordon' Brown hit the streets of Coventry, strutting around talking about crime, writes Rob Windsor, Coventry Socialist Party councillor.

9 April 2008

spotMuseum strike in Wales

Alec Thraves spoke to Darren Williams, campaigns officer for PCS in Wales, on the picket line of the Waterfront Museum in Swansea, on 3 April...

9 April 2008

spotNUJ conference

Journalists met for their union's Annual Delegate Meeting (ADM) as the first national newspaper strike in decades took place in Preston and London, writes Christian Bunke, Manchester NUJ.

9 April 2008

spotTube strike called off after winning concessions

Rail unions RMT and TSSA have called off their proposed three-day strike on London Underground after winning a number of concessions from management on health and safety issues, writes Reg Johnstone, RMT.

9 April 2008

spotWinchester: 'We need our post office'

ON 5 April, Socialist Party members gathered near WH Smiths in Winchester in a demonstration showing our disgust at the local post office's move to a cramped space in the back of that shop...

9 April 2008

spotNews in brief

CIVIL SERVANTS union PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka has called for trade unionists to pile pressure on the Labour government later this month, writes Rob Rooney.

9 April 2008

spotWhy should workers pay for the crisis?

JCB is the world's third largest manufacturer of earthmovers and other machines for the construction and agriculture industry, writes A JCB worker.

9 April 2008

spotGet active and fight back!

Portsmouth Activists Academy: This academic year has seen students protesting against fees around the country on 21 February, against anti-democratic attacks on students in Nottingham and Sussex, against privatisation of services in Exeter, saying no to m...

9 April 2008

spotStruggle still essential

NUS conference report: Newly elected National Union of Students (NUS) president Wes Streeting, claims students will lose influence on the government if they protest and demand free education, writes Matt Dobson.

9 April 2008

spotIsrael - Palestinian Land Day demonstration

ON 30 March, Palestinians commemorate Land Day by holding protest rallies and demonstrations all over the world, writes Maavak Sozialisti reporters,.

9 April 2008

spotIreland: \"The most cunning and devious of them all\" finally goes

AFTER 11 years as Taoiseach (Prime Minister), Bertie Ahern has announced his resignation for 6 May this year, writes Paul Murphy.

16 April 2008

spotBirmingham strike

Birmingham council have imposed a new pay and grading system onto their 40,000-strong workforce, under the guise of the 'single status' scheme, writes Dave Griffiths, West Midlands Socialist Party.

16 April 2008

spotEditorial: 24 April strikes: step forward in pay battle

THE NATIONAL Union of Teachers (NUT) was the first public-sector union to decide to take strike action on Thursday 24 April over the government's pay limit policy, and now nearly 400,000 public-sector workers are due to strike...

16 April 2008

spotGlobal food prices: anger erupts in mass protests

HUNGER AND malnutrition are getting far worse due to rising food prices. Even those fortresses of global capitalism, the World Bank and the International, writes Jon Dale and Jan Rybak.

16 April 2008

spotHow the other 0.01% live

A FOOD crisis is developing in Britain, though obviously not so severe as the impending catastrophe in the world's poorest countries...

16 April 2008

spotItalian election: new Berlusconi victory will provoke mass opposition

The election in Italy, which came after just 20 months of a weak centre-left government under Romano Prodi, has seen a 'comfortable' victory for Silvio Berlusconi's People of Freedom party...

16 April 2008

spotThe Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill: why all the controversy?

The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill going through parliament at the moment is causing controversy...

16 April 2008

spotRising class struggles across Europe

French workers demonstrate in 2003, photo Paul Mattsson

French workers demonstrate in 2003, photo Paul Mattsson

Striking workers in Greece and Portugal show the wayRepresentatives from European sections of the Committee for a Workers' International recently discussed events in Europe, particularly Greece, Germany and France.

16 April 2008

spotFrance 1968: 10 million workers occupied factories

Can it happen today? Speaking tour details: Virginie is a member of Gauche Révolutionnaire (CWI France). She is a socialist activist and is a trade union representative.

16 April 2008

spotFrance 1968: month of revolution by Clare Doyle

With a new introduction. Originally published in 1988. Brutal police repression of student demonstrations. Within days, 10 million French workers were on strike. Socialist Books, PO Box 24697, London E11 1YD, www.socialistbooks.co.uk
or ring 020 8988 8789.

16 April 2008

spotPortsmouth Activists Academy day of debate

On Saturday 12 April, Portsmouth students union, aided by Socialist Students members, held its inaugural Activist Academy, which brought together around 30 campaigners during the course of the day from groups across the south. Will Schafer-Peek, Southampton Socialist Students reports.

16 April 2008

spotThe radical life of Martin Luther King

THIS YEAR marks the 40th anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King, who was assassinated on 4 April 1968 while supporting striking Memphis sanitation workers. Will Soto, from Socialist Alternative in the USA, writes.

16 April 2008

spotUnison witch-hunt: Defend 'the four'

Onay Kasab, photo Paul Mattsson

Onay Kasab, photo Paul Mattsson


Greenwich Unison branch secretary Onay Kasab is one of four Unison officers currently facing a disciplinary hearing as part of a witch hunt being carried out by the union bureaucracy, writes Susan Wilson.

16 April 2008

spotStop the witch hunts!

Unison elections: Workers are facing a concerted onslaught on their pay, terms and conditions by health trusts, local authorities and Gordon Brown's Labour government...

16 April 2008

spotNational Shop Stewards Network

South Camden Community School, Charrington Street, London (near Kings Cross/Euston stations), writes Speakers include: Bob Crow RMT, Mark Serwotka PCS, Brian Caton POA, plus shop stewards from disputes around the country..

16 April 2008

spotRe-elect a fighting PCS leadership

The elections for the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union have just started, writes Katrine Williams, PCS Wales chair, personal capacity.

16 April 2008

spotNews in brief

Lecturers join 24 April strike; Shelter staff vote to strike again; Belfast Airport workers win concessions

16 April 2008

spotElections 2008

Lynn Worthington (left), photo Alison Hill

Lynn Worthington (left), photo Alison Hill


SOCIALIST ALTERNATIVE election canvassers are being well received on the doorsteps in Wythenshawe in Manchester, writes Lynn Worthington, Socialist Alternative candidate for Baguley ward, Manchester.

16 April 2008

spotHealth campaigners fight council cuts

Huddersfield: THE SOCIALIST Party in Huddersfield is now deep into its third straight year of election campaigning, writes A Huddersfield Socialist Party member.

16 April 2008

spotStanding up for socialism: candidate list

Where SOCIALIST PARTY members are standing in local council and Greater London Assembly elections on Thursday 1 May

16 April 2008

spotCampaign for a New Workers Party - conference 2008

Sunday 29 June 10am - 5pm. South Camden Community School, Charrington Street, London NW1 (nearest Rail/Tube stations - Kings Cross/St Pancras, Euston, Mornington Crescent)

16 April 2008

spotHousing crisis: Britain's house of cards

AS THE US economy moves sharply downwards, the threat of a crash in the British housing market is becoming ever more real, writes Marc Glasscoe, Socialist Party Lincoln.

16 April 2008

spotTax attack hits low paid workers

GORDON BROWN and New Labour are carrying out daylight robbery against the lowest paid workers, writes Tom Penman, CWU member and call centre worker, Dundee.

16 April 2008

spotWater 'regulators' hide real prices

ONE OF the many myths about privatisation is that privatised industries are 'regulated' to stop them carrying out anti-social activities...

16 April 2008

spot'We're striking against low pay'

Birmingham council workers strike on 5 February 2008, photo S O Neill

Birmingham council workers strike on 5 February 2008. PCS and teachers will join them on 24 April. Photo S O'Neill


On 24 April almost half a million public-sector workers will strike a blow against the government's policy of public-sector pay restraint, writes Jane Aitchison, civil service union PCS, Department for Work and Pensions group president, personal capacity.

22 April 2008

spotEditorial: Brown's government lurching from pillar to post

Over £50 billion is being handed to fat cat bankers while five million low-paid workers are losing out from the abolition of the 10p tax band...

22 April 2008

spotZimbabwe: Workers' strength stops arms shipment

WITH SOUTH Africa's ANC (African National Congress) government split over its attitude towards the Mugabe regime in neighbouring Zimbabwe, South African trade unionists used their strength decisively to act against the regim, writes Keith Dickinson.

22 April 2008

spotSupport striking teachers

TEACHERS ACROSS England and Wales are out on the streets on 24 April, many on strike for the first time in their lives, writes Linda Taaffe, Waltham Forest NUT.

23 April 2008

spotVote socialist on 1 May

"Socialist councillors are the only ones who've ever stood up for this area and taken the time to listen to us, I'll definitely be voting for Dave" - this was typical of the responses received by Socialist Party supporter, writes Richard Groves, Coventry West Socialist Party.

23 April 2008

spotShelter workers escalate action

SHELTER MANAGEMENT'S recent derisory offer to its workforce has got the answer it deserved. A Shelter worker writes.

23 April 2008

spotWhy DWP workers are striking

I'M ON strike on 24 April with hundreds of thousands of other workers across the public sector, writes By a DWP worker.

23 April 2008

spotOil workers to strike back at pensions threat

Grangemouth refinery: FUEL STRIKE 'will bleed pumps dry' and 'Panic at the pumps,' were some of the sensation-seeking headlines in Scotland's newspapers on 20 April, writes Philip Stott, Dundee.

23 April 2008

spotWhy drug firms should be nationalised

Seroxat scandal: IN MAY 2003, Britain's biggest drug company Glaxo-SmithKline (GSK) handed a document to the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), writes Alan Manley, nurse and Unison member Dundee.

23 April 2008

spotJersey - Growing anger against elite of secrets

GARY MATTHEWS, who was a Jersey Left Green MP from 1993-96, spoke to Jon Dale. Now living in Derbyshire, Gary is still active in the Time for Change group on Jersey, which has a founding conference on 27 April.

23 April 2008

spotHow can we defeat the far right?

The far-right, racist British National Party (BNP) is hoping to gain a seat on the Greater London Assembly on 1 May, as well as more councillors round the country. The Socialist outlines Socialist answers to the far-right.

23 April 2008

spotCampaign to unionise migrant workers

Usdaw conference: HOW DO we recruit migrant workers into the trade unions? Their recruitment is a major challenge facing the unions today. An Usdaw member writes.

23 April 2008

spot'The Conscience of a Liberal' by Paul Krugman

Reviewed by Peter Taaffe: As the pace of the intractable crisis of world capitalism speeds up and deepens, so the frantic rush to find solutions gathers pace...

23 April 2008

spotItaly: Left leaders opened way for Berlusconi victory

A victory for the right led by Silvio Berlusconi and an electoral 'bloodbath' for the Sinistra arcobaleno (Rainbow Left). Christine Thomas, Lotta, cwi Italy, writes.

23 April 2008

spotGloucester says... 'save our post offices'

ON 19 April a Save Our Post Offices (SOPO) rally in Gloucester's shopping centre attracted 50 local campaigners...

23 April 2008

spotThe rich get richer... and we foot the bill!

Tax cuts for the rich: Big business has received a corporation tax cut from 30p to 28p this month, down from 33p when New Labour was elected in 1997...

25 April 2008

spotReports of the 24 April strikes

Latest reports

28 April 2008

spotShelter workers step up strike action - update

A Shelter worker: Last Thursday and Friday, Shelter workers in England and Scotland once again showed their determination by striking to defeat management attacks on their terms and conditions...

29 April 2008

spotGrangemouth oil refinery strike

At 6am on 27 April the night shift at Grangemouth oil refinery walked out on strike, writes Ian Leech.

29 April 2008

spotA week of strikes shakes government

Editorial: The strike on 24 April by hundreds of thousands of teachers, civil servants and college lecturers shook the government...

30 April 2008

spotDefend Eddie Fleming

At the Child Support Agency site in Hastings, managers have given staff member Frank Swaine (aka Swayne) permission to stand for the BNP in the local elections, writes A CSA worker.

30 April 2008

spotUnison witch-hunt

The four Unison members under attack from their own union leaders have now had their disciplinary hearings postponed...

30 April 2008

spotCorus Trostre, further job losses

At the Corus steel plant in Trostre, Llanelli, a further 300 jobs will be lost due to a claimed 'global overcapacity'...

30 April 2008

spotLincoln rejects insulting pay offer

With bills rising, council tax hikes and petrol going through the roof it's little wonder that council workers in Lincoln feel as if they are getting poorer, writes Marc Glasscoe, branch secretary, Lincoln City Unison, personal capacity.

30 April 2008

spotBolivia - right-wing coup threat

BOLIVIA IS awash with rumours about an impending right-wing coup against the elected government of president Evo Morales, writes Karl Debbaut.

30 April 2008

spotSaving our post offices!

Tales from the council chambers: PROTESTS CAN change things - but are even more effective when there are socialist councillors to direct public pressure onto the establishment parties, writes Clive Heemskerk.

30 April 2008

spotSocialist councillors back teachers

LEWISHAM'S COUNCIL meeting was on the eve of the teachers' strike. The Socialist Party councillors proposed a motion, arguing that education was threatened...

30 April 2008

spot"Why I am standing against Labour"

PHIL JORDAN, South West Regional chair of the FBU (Fire Brigades Union) and Gloucester trades council president, is standing in Tuffley for the Gloucester city elections on 1 May as an independent...

30 April 2008

spotStudents stage occupation

Manchester University: At 4pm on Tuesday 22 April, around 300 University of Manchester students gathered for a campus demonstration to express their anger at the way the university is run, writes Abby Taylor, Manchester University Socialist Students.

30 April 2008

spotLove Music Hate Racism

Fighting the far right: ON A wet Sunday afternoon tens of thousands of people turned out for the Love Music Hate Racism Carnival (LMHR) in east London's Victoria Park...

30 April 2008

spotGerman anti-fascist demo

ON 26 April, for the third time within a few weeks, Nazis demonstrated in Stolberg, near Aachen...

30 April 2008

spotStop PFI pirates wrecking our NHS

Coventry Councillor Dave Nellist on NHS demonstration 1st November 2006, photo Paul Mattsson

Coventry Councillor Dave Nellist on NHS demonstration 1st November 2006, photo Paul Mattsson

THE NATIONAL Health Service has its 60th birthday this July. Can working people still celebrate this vital service which they struggled for years to obtain, writes Keith White.

30 April 2008

spotPublic sector strike shows fightback has begun!

Teachers on strike on 24 April 2008 in Lewisham, photo Martin Powell-Davies

Teachers on strike on 24 April 2008 in Lewisham, photo Martin Powell-Davies

Last week hundreds of thousands of teachers, civil servants and college lecturers struck a blow for everyone who has had their living standards attacked in recent years, writes Steve Score, Leicester Socialist Party.

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