Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1047/29272
From The Socialist newspaper, 19 June 2019
Oppose big business's sphere of influence!
The enormous 'MSG Sphere' in Newham, east London, would look something like this (Click to enlarge)
Ian Pattison, East London Socialist Party
A Trump backer plans to build a sphere - as tall as Big Ben and as wide as the Millennium Dome - in Newham, east London.
The private venue will host concerts and other events. But the site is already a stone's throw from the 7,500 capacity Copper Box Arena, in the 2012 Olympic Park and the nearby London Stadium, which can hold 80,000 for concerts.
Campaigners have challenged the effect its construction will have on pollution. Parts of Newham regularly exceed safe levels of air pollution at the moment.
With the arrival of the sphere, nearby residents will lose the right to park for free outside their homes. And there hasn't been a thought for the extra congestion at the already-busy Stratford station.
There are so many other things the space, surrounded by Newham residents, could be used for.
25,000 people are on the (closed off) housing waiting list in the borough. Housing experts suggest there's space for 1,400 homes. Or the area could be turned into a park to give space and light to the people who currently live there.
But the site went out of public hands in 2015 when it was sold to Westfield shopping centre for £9 million. Just two years later, they made an enormous profit offloading the land to the current owners for £60 million.
Anti-Corbyn London mayor Sadiq Khan backs the plans. The all-Labour council and Newham Labour mayor Roksana Fiaz must immediately oppose and block the sphere.
The London Legacy Development Corporation - an undemocratic and unelected body that runs developments relating to the 2012 Olympics - also has a say over the space.
It only confirms what the Socialist Party warned. Without working-class control and public ownership, ordinary Londoners won't benefit in the long-term with homes or regeneration following the Olympic Games.
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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.
The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.
The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.
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- When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 19 June 2019:
What we think
While the Tories elect a new leader - prepare action to remove the lot of them
Welsh government must block NHS privatisation or face workers' action
Council cuts continue while reserves rise
Cancer stats reveal deep inequality
Them & Us
Stop climate change - fight for socialist change
What way forward to tackle climate change?
Trade union action can end low pay
Schools unions must turn anger into a fight against funding catastrophe
Unite must be at the head of fighting for a general election and against council cuts
South Western Railway staff strike for safety
Ford Bridgend workers vote to fight to save threatened plant
Bluestar bus drivers' strike over pay
East London bin workers call 12-day strike over wage grades
Swansea Parcelforce workers picket depot in support of victimised rep
Harrogate academy workers strike against closure
International socialist news and analysis
Chinese regime's puppet government in Hong Kong pushed back by mass protests
Sudan: The revolution under threat
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
Angry Barking residents' meeting demands answers and action following fire
Orgreave injustice - 35th anniversary march and rally
Oppose big business's sphere of influence!
Young Socialists - re-establishing Rhondda's fighting traditions
North Shields: second march and rally to #SaveOurBridge
Newton Abbot says no to Tory privatisation of the NHS!
Worcester: Building on our successful library campaign
Defend free TV licences for over-75s!
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