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From The Socialist newspaper, 4 July 2012

Olympic-watch

Tax haven in the city

The 'event of the summer' will be treated just like the tax havens of Jersey or the Virgin Islands. Olympic sponsors are being given temporary exemption from corporate tax. It could mean companies like Coca-Cola and McDonalds avoid paying up to 600 million in tax.

Even the London Organising Committee has got itself a 100 million tax concession. Presumably the low-paid catering, security and stewarding staff can't expect the same treatment. This is yet another bailout for the super-rich.

Still waiting

Newham, the borough containing the Olympic Park, was promised the world when London won the Olympic bid back in 2005. Billions of pounds of public money have been spent within its borders and yet residents are still waiting to feel the effects.

A study by the London School of Economics has shown that the gap between household income in Newham and the rest of London grew between 2006 and 2011. Between 2005 and 2010 unemployment in Newham grew 44%.

Security operation

The Olympic Games are starting to look something like a James Bond film at best: An 5,000 volt electric fence will separate the area from the rest of London. 9,500 police officers will be on duty at peak times and the security team will include 23,000 officers including 13,500 military and 1,000 US diplomatic and FBI agents. Boats on the Thames that get too close to restricted areas will be caught in 'entanglement mechanisms'.

Even the air over east London is a no-go zone. And the military will be pre-authorised to shoot down anything that violates this order - presumably using the ground-to-air missiles planted on people's roofs across the capital. And all this for a snip at an estimated 1 billion.

Housing legacy

People who live and work in the Olympic boroughs are putting up with a lot for the Olympics - a transport nightmare, price increases, long working hours. But when the Games are over, we've been told we'll be re-paid in kind - five brand new neighbourhoods, 11,000 new properties built on the Olympic site in the next 20 years, and more than a third of them affordable.

But changes introduced by the Con-Dems mean that affordable can be anything up to 80% of market rate. So in Newham, one of the Olympic boroughs, an 'affordable' two bedroom property could be 762 a month.

A Newham housing worker was quoted in the Independent saying: "There are 32,000 people on the social housing waiting list here and we don't expect the Olympic Park to make a dent in that."

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In The Socialist 4 July 2012:


Socialist Party campaigns

Jail the banksters! Nationalise the banks under popular democratic control


Socialist Party NHS campaign

SAVE OUR NHS

It's our NHS - let's fight for it!

Welsh Labour's health service 'redesign' means cuts!

South London NHS: Socialist councillors said: 'Axe PFI, not our NHS'


Socialist Party feature

PCS votes to stand candidates in national elections


Socialist Party LGBT

Sexuality, austerity and socialism


International socialist news and analysis

Kazakhstan: Resisting state oppression, fighting for survival


Socialist Party workplace news

London buses: "This is why we're in the union"

Wales Shop Stewards Network conference calls for 24 hour general strike

RMT conference: Vote for one-day general strike

Essex FBU strike back at bullyboy management

Unite needs fighting socialist policies

Supporting Sheffield recycling workers

Workplace news in brief


Obituary

Obituary: Roger MacKay, a tireless fighter for socialist ideas


Socialist Party appeal

Save our server!


Youth fight for jobs

Immolation horror - we demand jobs

Leicester: Police undermined opposition to racist march

Racist and hooligan EDL invades Dewsbury

Olympic-watch

Them&Us


Socialist Party review

Various Pets Alive and Dead


 

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