The Socialist 4 November 2008
Striking against low pay
National and local leaders of the trade unions in Ford have called a lobby of Southampton council on 26 November. Union leaders will be meeting with the Tory-run council. The lobby has been called to increase the pressure to raise the £100 million needed to re-tool the Southampton plant and keep the Transit commercial vehicle production there.
Ford workers and supporters are being asked to attend the lobby at 9am at Southampton Civic Centre, Civic Centre Road.
Lloyds have announced that 30,000 jobs will be axed in the wake of its merger with failed bank HBOS, despite a £17 billion bailout by the government - paid for by workers' taxes. The merger is part of chancellor Alistair Darling's rescue package, giving a 40% government stake in the new bank. In addition to the job losses, Lloyds said that it would close branches and call centres.
HBOS nosedived after losing £2.7 billion in write-offs on corporate and residential loans, and hits relating to the fall of Lehman Brothers. It will also be affected by the collapse of Iceland's three banks.
RBS bank, which has been bailed out by the government to the tune of £20 billion, also intends to slash jobs.
Yes, but no
David Hodgkinson, chief operating officer at HSBC bank warned that it may not pass on the full effect of a Bank of England interest rate cut to customers.
Hodgkinson, who was part of a business delegation accompanying Gordon Brown on his recent tour of the Gulf, said: "Clearly if interest rates are down significantly the rates for borrowing will go down but I am not going to say it is absolutely linear, because it depends on the particular (situation) and the risk." That's a no!
Michael Gove, the neo-con Tory MP, has accused workers who dig up roads of starting late, clocking off early and of a "criminal" lack of activity. Something which MPs can never be accused of!
Some may wish Gove has the same fate as the busybody posh bloke in Bernard Cribbins song, Hole in the ground: "Well there we were, discussing this 'ole'. Ole in the ground, so big and sort o' round.
"It's not there now, the ground's all flat. And beneath it is the bloke in the bowler hat. And that's that!"
US tycoon Donald Trump's plans for a £1 billion golf resort near Aberdeen, Scotland, have been approved by the SNP government.
The proposals were rejected by Aberdeenshire council last year because part of the resort will encroach on protected sand dunes near Balmedie.
But their decision was overturned by Scottish government and finance secretary John Swinney who said there was "a significant economic and social benefit" in granting the application.
Mr Trump welcomed the decision.
In this issue
Socialist Party campaigns
Marxist analysis: history
Socialist Party workplace news