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Archive for July 2007

5 July 2007

spotSign up to the CNWP campaign

THE CNWP'S newly elected officers met recently to discuss the way forward for the campaign...

5 July 2007

spotBlair's toadying surpasses all clichés

The Blair moment: TONY BLAIR'S last prime minister's question time and subsequent departure from Downing Street defied historical precedent...

5 July 2007

spotCampaign for a New Workers' Party: Giving workers a voice

Campaign for a New Workers Party (CNWP) conference 2007, photo Paul Mattsson

Campaign for a New Workers Party (CNWP) conference 2007, photo Paul Mattsson

Campaign for a New Workers' Party: BLAIR RECEIVED a standing ovation from all the establishment parties after his leaving speech in parliament...

5 July 2007

spotNational Shop Stewards' Network conference: Join the fightback against the bosses' offensive

National Shop Stewards' Network conference: This Saturday 7 July will see hundreds of shop stewards and workplace reps from all unions and industries gather together in London at the founding conference of the National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN)....

5 July 2007

spotLively CNWP meeting in Cardiff

ON 28 June, the Wales CNWP's public meeting in Cardiff heard Armajit Singh, CWU postal secretary in Cardiff, explain why CWU members were going on strike the next day...

5 July 2007

spotUnite against war, poverty and terrorism

THE FAILED car bombs in London and Glasgow, targeting a packed nightclub and busy airport, marked the end of Blair's premiership and the beginning of Brown's...

5 July 2007

spotPostal workers: we're striking to win

Postal workers on strike in June 2007, photo Paul Mattsson

Postal workers on strike in June 2007, photo Paul Mattsson

Postal workers send a message to Royal Mail: Trevor Prior from Cambridge, a delivery rep for the Communication Workers' Union (CWU) spoke to the socialist in a personal capacity about the success of the strike....

5 July 2007

spotPostal workers' strike gets solid support across the country

Postal workers on strike in 2007, photo Socialist Party

Postal workers on strike in 2007, photo Socialist Party

Postal workers strike - 29 June: GLOUCESTERSHIRE'S POSTAL workers gave an almost unanimous reply to Royal Mail's plans to attack pay and conditions and slash 40,000 jobs, when 97% of the 1,400 Communication Workers Union (CWU) members walked out on strike ...

5 July 2007

spotUnder several feet of flood water - after flood defence budget cut

ON 25 June, the equivalent of one-sixth of a year's rainfall fell on South Yorkshire in 24 hours...

5 July 2007

spotSurplus cash yet cutbacks continue

Manchester health: AS THE health service reaches its 60th year, cuts are still on the order of the day in greater Manchester...

5 July 2007

spotWhy the United Nations fails the test of internationalism

DESPITE THE failure of the United Nations (UN) since its inception to prevent and resolve wars and conflicts, and its inability to eradicate crushing poverty and prevent climate change on a world scale, many (including those ...

5 July 2007

spotIran: Riots over petrol rationing

ON 26 June, the Iranian regime implemented its secret plan of rationing petrol and increasing the price...

5 July 2007

spotClimate change: socialist international planning needed

Climate change: ORGANISED TO raise awareness of climate change, Live Earth is a series of concerts with an estimated worldwide audience of 2 billion people, taking place over seven continents on 7 July...

5 July 2007

spotGeorge Bush - a get out of jail ticket

WITH GEORGE Bush commuting Lewis "Scooter" Libby's prison sentence for obstructing justice, perjury and giving false statements to the FBI, the rich socialite, dilettante, Paris Hilton, must be ruing not making a substanti...

5 July 2007

spotTales from the council chamber

Lewisham One victory, one defeat : LEWISHAM'S TENANTS won an important victory against New Labour's homes privatisation plans at last week's council meeting...

5 July 2007

spot'Living in a parallel universe'

Coventry: COVENTRY COUNCIL'S last meeting was like entering some parallel universe. The Tories (majority group on the council) moved a motion opposing the closure...

5 July 2007

spotUNISON delegates challenge leadership

UNISON conference: THE MOST important point about UNISON conference was that the mood of anger and dissatisfaction reflected in the recent elections for the national executive council (NEC) also surfaced at conference...

5 July 2007

spotRMT conference: Fighting a thousand cuts

RMT conference: Dave Reid continues his report from the AGM (conference) of rail union RMT (see earlier report)....

5 July 2007

spotVictory over bullying management

On 29 June Manchester Advice (MA) workers closed Manchester City Council's advice centre for the first time ever, due to health and safety fears over bullying management tactics....

5 July 2007

spotNot so nice Mr Branson

RMT rail union members working for Virgin on the West Coast mainline took strike action on 27 and 28 June in defence of a member who had been sacked for allegedly causing "wilful damage to company property."...

5 July 2007

spot"A new gilded age of inequality"

LAST YEAR the world's richest people increased their wealth at the fastest rate in seven years...

5 July 2007

spotStop subsidising private schools

OVERALL JUST 7% of children are educated at 'independent' ie private, fee-paying schools...

5 July 2007

spotPakistan: Union activist has suspension withdrawn following protests

AZAD QADRI, Deputy General Secretary of the Lion's Unity Union, suspended by the management of the privatised Pakistan Telecommunications company, has won reinstatement after a protest campaign by trade unionists in Pakistan...

5 July 2007

spotTwo plays reviewed by Mark Baker: 'Philistines' and 'The Last Confession'

Philistines was written in 1902. Its author, Maxim Gorky, was a Marxist and a close associate of Lenin up to 1913 when he broke from the Bolsheviks. ...

5 July 2007

spotSocialism 2007

Socialism 2007

Sick of low pay and long hours? Angry at cuts, closures and privatisation?

Had enough of war and poverty across the globe?

Then come to Socialism 2007!

17-18 November 2007

University of London Union, Central London

Rally for Socialism

17 November 2007

Mark Serwotka, general secretary of the PCS trade union
Peter Taaffe, Socialist Party general secretary.

Go to socialism2007.net to find out more and book your tickets.

www.socialism2007.net

5 July 2007

spotBrown's government for the rich

Demonstration against cuts in the NHS, 1 November 2006, photo Paul Mattsson

Demonstration against cuts in the NHS, 1 November 2006, photo Paul Mattsson

'TORY' BLAIR has gone at last. Good riddance! Unfortunately we are left with his legacy of cuts, privatisation, war and terrorism. Will Gordon Brown...

12 July 2007

spotVictory to the postal workers

A SECOND day of strike action by postal workers was called because the Royal Mail management point blank refused to even negotiate with the Communication Workers Union (CWU).The bosses are demanding, in effect, complete capit...

12 July 2007

spotPublic support for Post Office counters strike

Post Office Counters staff are usually very moderate but 73% voted for industrial action because of Crown Office closures, job losses and real pay cuts....

12 July 2007

spotBob Crow calls for new party

Bob Crow, RMT general secretary, addresses the National Shop Stewards Network conference July 2007, photo Dave Carr

Bob Crow, RMT general secretary, addresses the National Shop Stewards Network conference July 2007, photo Dave Carr

A successful founding conference of the National Shop Stewards Network took place on Saturday 7 July with nearly 300 shop stewards and workplace representatives attending.

Delegates from all over the country were inspired during the course of the day by the mood of unity and determination to build the network.

12 July 2007

spotNational Shop Stewards Network conference: A good starting point for strengthening struggle

National Shop Stewards Network conference July 2007

National Shop Stewards Network conference July 2007

National Shop Stewards Network conference: "In the future, when people look back, this will be seen as the starting point in rebuilding the TUC." That was how Bob Crow, general secretary of the RMT (rail workers' union) described the founding conference

12 July 2007

spotTGWU/Unite conference delegates cheer call for action on anti-trade union laws

TGWU/Unite conference: The final Biennial Delegate Conference of the TGWU, taking place this year as a section of Unite, had the theme of a 'fight-back union'...

12 July 2007

spotAction needed to save the NHS

HOSPITAL CAMPAIGNERS People United Saving Hospitals (PUSH) organised protests on 5 July, the 59th anniversary of the national health service...

12 July 2007

spotCampaign saves Swansea hospital unit

HEALTH CAMPAIGNERS have won a major victory by ensuring that Morriston Hospital's neurosurgery unit remains in Swansea for the indefinite future...

12 July 2007

spotSussex must fight back against NHS cuts

TWO OR three of West Sussex's accident and emergency (A&E) hospitals are threatened with downgrading, with privately-run Urgent Care Units being set up...

12 July 2007

spotDurham health cuts show need for new workers' party

SEVEN HUNDRED 'surplus' jobs were cut from Durham's NHS in the last year...

12 July 2007

spotWales Assembly coalition no answer to workers' problems

Wales Assembly: LABOUR PARTY Wales and the Plaid Cymru party have reached an historic agreement and formed a new government in Wales, the One Wales coalition...

12 July 2007

spotCardiff: Fight school cuts and closures

PARENTS, SCHOOL students, teachers, school workers and local communities are united in condemning Cardiff Liberal council's latest round of school cutbacks....

12 July 2007

spotNurseries campaign embarrasses councillors

THE STRUGGLE to save three Huddersfield nurseries from closure has entered a critical stage...

12 July 2007

spotSouthall Labour councillors cross floor

ON 9 July the Conservatives in Ealing, west London, celebrated five leading Labour councillors in Southall defecting to their party...

12 July 2007

spotKwik Save workers betrayed by bosses and union

SHOPWORKERS' UNION USDAW have proclaimed 11 July as 'Respect for Shopworkers' Day'...

12 July 2007

spotCouncil workers make a stand

Salford : Salford council workers are striking against management breaking long-standing agreements and casualising their jobs...

12 July 2007

spotSocialist Party Youth and students

It was clear from the discussion at the recent Socialist Party youth and student meeting that activists could have a busy summer ahead....

12 July 2007

spotThe 'July days' - rich in lessons for today

Following previous articles on the 1917 February revolution and the April Days, PETER TAAFFE now moves on to the 'July Days'....

12 July 2007

spotPolitical discourse can swing!

From the plantation to the penitentiary by Wynton Marsalis: Wynton Marsalis has never shirked controversy but with the release of From the Plantation to the Penitentiary, it appears he decided to take on all comers...

12 July 2007

spotSouth Africa: union leaders call off biggest-ever strike

ON 28 June, public sector unions called off South Africa's biggest-ever strike, involving nearly one million workers which began on 1 June...

12 July 2007

spotSlave-labour scandal in China

NEWS OF slavery, torture, human trafficking and children imprisoned in conditions "worse than dog kennels" has exploded like a bomb in China and dealt a serious blow to the credibility of the ruling 'communist' party....

12 July 2007

spotLondon Underground derailment: Kick out dangerous profiteers!

JUST AFTER 9am on 5 July a London Underground Central Line train was derailed, trapping 800 passengers underground for about two hours...

12 July 2007

spotFighting low pay, defending jobs and services

Postal workers on strike, photo Socialist Party

Postal workers on strike, photo Socialist Party

POST WORKERS in the Communication Workers Union (CWU) are holding a second 24-hour national strike from the evening of Thursday 12 July to Friday 13 July...

16 July 2007

spotUrgent appeal for solidarity from contract workers at the Gualberto Villarroel oil refinery in Cochabamba, Bolivia

The Committee for a Workers' International has received this appeal. A hunger strike is due to start on Tuesday and we need letters/e/mails of solidarity...

19 July 2007

spotMetronet - bankrupt firm, bankrupt PPP

METRONET, THE private company responsible for maintaining and upgrading two-thirds of London's underground network under the notorious public-private partnership PPP scheme (part-privatisation), is heading for administration...

19 July 2007

spotPostal workers - fighting low pay, against privatisation and job cuts

Postal workers on strike, photo Socialist Party

Postal workers on strike, photo Socialist Party

Royal Mail postal workers held a second successful 24-hour strike, that started at 7pm on Thursday 12 July. Delivery and sorting offices throughout the country were brought to a halt, as the workers' anger against low pay, job losses and other cuts made itself felt.

19 July 2007

spotFight cuts threat to London hospitals

Health workers demonstrate at Whipps Cross hospital in East London, photo Paul Mattsson

Health workers demonstrate at Whipps Cross hospital in East London, photo Paul Mattsson

ANYONE HOPING that Gordon Brown becoming prime minister might mean fewer attacks on the NHS and less privatisation, will be shocked by the latest proposals for massive cuts to London's hospitals...

19 July 2007

spotUSA: The case for socialised medicine

THE FOLLOWING articles appear in Justice, the newspaper of Socialist Alternative -the Socialist Party's counterpart in the USA...

19 July 2007

spot'Universal healthcare' plans of the Democrats fall short

WITH HEALTHCARE costs at an all-time high and one-in-five non-elderly Americans uninsured, 'universal healthcare' is a top promise of all the serious Democratic presidential hopefuls...

19 July 2007

spot'Strategic failure' in Iraq and Afghanistan

Editorial: Bush still claims that Iraq under US and British military occupation is making progress towards a stable, democratic society...

19 July 2007

spotGlasgow social workers vote for indefinite strike

Six hundred social care workers (SCW), employees of social work services in Glasgow city council and members of UNISON, are due to begin all-out indefinite strike action from Tuesday 24 July...

19 July 2007

spotDefend democracy - stop the witch-hunt in UNISON

The leadership of UNISON is attacking the rights of ordinary members. So fearful are they of the growing opposition to their misrule that they are seeking...

19 July 2007

spotSchool dinners saved... for now

On 24 May, Waltham Forest's Labour leader faced a 300-strong crowd of protesting catering workers, parents and school students on the town hall steps...

19 July 2007

spotLiving in the GDR: Balancing between two different worlds

Sonja Grossner joined the Socialist Party last year. She is the daughter of two German socialist and anti-Nazi fighters. She was born in England in 1942...

19 July 2007

spotCan flood relief get Hull back on its feet?

Flooded with Debt, cartoon by Suz at www.squashdonkey.co.uk

Flooded with Debt, cartoon by Suz at www.squashdonkey.co.uk

"IT'S A drop in the ocean," was how one woman responded to the announcement that Hull would receive £2.1 million in immediate flood relief from the government...

19 July 2007

spot'War crimes' accusations by mine workers

A FEDERAL court in Birmingham, Alabama, is trying the US mining company Drummond for war crimes...

19 July 2007

spotVisteon workers walk out

WORKERS AT the Visteon plant in Swansea walked out on 17 July. Visteon is the parts organisation hived off by Ford....

19 July 2007

spotLewisham schools: defending 'outdated' equality

Council cuts threaten schools: VOTERS IN Lewisham, south London thought they were electing their council to run local schools and services...

19 July 2007

spotBuilding resistance to schools closures in Cardiff

CARDIFF COUNCIL'S ruling Liberal Democrats have selected their first targets for closures and cutbacks of Cardiff's schools and leisure facilities...

19 July 2007

spotEducation - not safe in Brown's hands

MANY UNIVERSITIES are in financial crisis, student debt has risen to over £3 billion and there is massive pressure on students and their families...

19 July 2007

spotBoost our pay: Organising for our rights at work

"Which is the first generation that will have to work to 68 before becoming eligible for a state pension...

19 July 2007

spotSocialism 2007

Socialism 2007 is a weekend of discussion and debate hosted by the Socialist Party, taking place on 17-18 November 2007....

19 July 2007

spotCome to Socialist Party summer camp

Friday 24 - Monday 27 August, near Chelmsford, Essex

19 July 2007

spotBuild a new workers' party

PCS workers on strike 1 May 2007. Workers need a party to represent their needs. Photo Paul Mattsson

PCS workers on strike 1 May 2007. Workers need a party that will defend their interests. Photo Paul Mattsson

Trade unions - break with New Labour: Rail workers' union (RMT) general secretary Bob Crow broadened the debate about the need for a new workers' party when he addressed the National Shop Stewards Network recently...

24 July 2007

spotGovernment cuts add to flooding crisis

At Mount Priory in Gloucester people have been flooded three times in 18 months, so they set up an action group. Photo Chris Moore

At Mount Priory in Gloucester people have been flooded three times in 18 months, so they set up an action group. Photo Chris Moore

Editorial: AT THE time of writing, the worst floods in Britain in modern history are still causing havoc...

24 July 2007

spotFloods - who pays the bill?

AS SEVERE flooding hit England again, South Yorkshire and other areas were still suffering from the after-effects of June's floods - made worse by the New Labour government's inadequate response....

24 July 2007

spotPostal workers: Their fight is our fight

An end to Saturday deliveries; fewer collections from post boxes; staggered delivery systems so you don't get your mail every day; the closure of 2,500 crown post offices with the business being sold off to privateers W H Sm...

24 July 2007

spotCritical dispute for postal workers

Editorial: COMMUNICATION WORKERS' Union (CWU) members in the postal service are taking further action in their struggle for decent pay, to defend jobs and stop cuts to the service....

24 July 2007

spotNew Labour ignored flood warnings

Caution wet floor - flooding in the centre of Gloucester, photo Chris Moore

Caution wet floor - flooding in the centre of Gloucester, photo Chris Moore

Flood crisis: Across Gloucestershire 350,000 people have been left without water for at least a week and 50,000 without power...

26 July 2007

spotSupport Glasgow's social work strikers

SIX HUNDRED Social Care Workers, members of Unison and employees of Glasgow city council Social Work Services, began all-out indefinite strike action on 24 July in pursuit of their claim for a higher grading....

26 July 2007

spotTories save New Labour skins

IN MAY the Tories announced they were abandoning their policy of re-introducing 'grammar schools in every town.' Their then education spokesperson, David Willetts, argued they could use New Labour's education 'reforms' i...

26 July 2007

spotIf this is New Labour democracy...

THE BROWN government has produced a green paper on local democracy, entitled the 'Governance of Britain'...

26 July 2007

spotMetronet walks away from trouble...

LAST WEEK Metronet, the private company that maintained and upgraded two-thirds of London's underground (LUL) network under the notorious public-private partnership (PPP), called in the administrators....

26 July 2007

spotVicious bile and grovelling sweet talk

Alastair Campbell's Diaries: TONY MULHEARN, a member of the Socialist Party and one of the '47 group' of Liverpool councillors who fought Thatcher's Tories in the 1980s, reviews The Blair Years: The Alastair Campbell Diaries....

26 July 2007

spotWhy do we watch Big Brother?

ANOTHER SUMMER, another eleven weeks of temper tantrums, arguments and intrigues in the Big Brother (BB) house...

26 July 2007

spotVisteon workers continue fight for jobs

Visteon workers in Swansea are involved in a bitter dispute with management that spilled over into two stoppages last week, one of them for 24 hours. ...

26 July 2007

spotNational Shop Stewards' Network hits the ground running

The first committee meeting of the National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN) took place on 21 July...

26 July 2007

spotAnother missed opportunity on teachers' pay

Despite the usual end of term frenzy in schools, many teachers responded to the National Union of Teachers' (NUT) call to make known to the union their disgust at Brown's proposed measly 2% a year pay increase up to 2011...

26 July 2007

spotThe China Effect

WEATHER AND wallet permitting, the lure of summer holidays beckons, at least in the northern hemisphere...

26 July 2007

spotAirports industry expansion plans fail to take off

IN MAY 2007 a public inquiry started at Stansted Airport, Essex, over plans to increase the number of passengers from the current 25 million limit a year to 35 million...

26 July 2007

spotBrown's 'affordable housing' plan - all smoke and mirrors?

PRIME MINISTER Gordon Brown stirred up the press and the housing world last week when, after just two weeks in post, he promised a 20% increase in the country's housebuilding programme, claiming that three million homes woul...

26 July 2007

spotErdogan's election victory reveals Turkey's faultlines

THE GENERAL election in Turkey took place on 22 July and, as expected, the ruling AKP (Justice and Development Party) was returned to power with 47% of the popular vote compared to the 20% for the opposition Republican People...

26 July 2007

spotMass protests planned at the APEC summit

Australia: THOUSANDS OF people will attend protests during the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation (APEC) summit in Sydney, Australia, on 7-8 September 2007...

26 July 2007

spotSocialism 2007

17 - 18 November 2007: Last November I attended the Socialism 2006 event hosted by the Socialist Party...

26 July 2007

spotRally for Socialism

Speakers Include:: Book your tickets online now at www.socialism2007.net...

26 July 2007

spotSocialist Party summer camp

The Transitional Programme in theory and practice...

26 July 2007

spotNHS: no more cuts, no more privatisation

The trade unions need to unite the campaigns to defend the NHS and fight for a living wage for a health workers...

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