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Sunday, May 19, 2024

The Socialist issue 886

27 January 2016

Housing: smash the Tory wrecking bill

PDF | Audio | 2016 Back issues


The Socialist issue 886

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Socialist Party news and analysis

spotHousing: smash the Tory wrecking bill

A Dickensian world of slum housing, overcrowding, soaring rents and the threat of eviction is now becoming the reality for millions of ordinary people in Tory Britain. But this is just a foretaste of what is in store if the Housing Bill becomes law.

spotDavos summit: a broken capitalist system

At their annual semi-secret get together in Davos, Switzerland last week, 3,000 bankers, industry chiefs, media moguls and capitalist politicians met to deliberate the state of world affairs. These self-declared ‘masters of the universe’ were forced to conclude that their system isn’t working properly.

spotGoogle pays pittance for avoiding £2bn tax

Search engine and advertising giant Google has agreed to pay £130 million in ten years of back taxes. This is a derisory sum considering Google recorded sales in Britain for 2014 alone of £4.5 billion.

spotRed doors and wristbands scandal

Refugees and asylum seekers in Middlesbrough, Teesside, have been experiencing daily abuse and attack. Their homes were marked out with red-painted doors. Meanwhile in Cardiff, a private housing firm has been marking the asylum seekers it accommodates with compulsory red wristbands.

spotSteelworkers may face benefit cut-off for not seeking bar jobs

Skilled steelworkers, recently made redundant, could apparently face punishing benefit sanctions – for refusing to seek low-paid work which doesn’t use their skills.

spotOscars snub black artists: fight racism and austerity in the arts

Non-white actors, producers, and theatre and film makers are under-represented, as are women. Cuts in arts funding, and tuition fees in drama schools and universities, disproportionately affect us.

spotLabour councillor smears TUSC policy as ‘BNP’

A right-wing Labour councillor in Tower Hamlets, east London, has accused anti-austerity activists of emulating the far-right, racist British National Party.

spotThem & Us

It’s one world for the super-rich, and another one for the rest of us. Pensioners freeze as energy firms profit; sicko bosses sicken sick workers; worker told to pay boss!

spotTop tweets: #TraditionallySubmissive

David Cameron recently attacked Muslim women. He apparently said the “traditional submissiveness of Muslim women” is a cause of terrorism. His answer was English language training – which his government has cut the funding for.

Teachers under attack

spotTeaching: a perfect storm is brewing

A lack of school places, teacher shortage and cuts are compounding existing issues related to workload.

spotTeachers need national strategy for a national struggle

Teachers across the country are demonstrating a willingness to fight for, and more importantly win, on pay and conditions with a flurry of schools taking strike action over the last few months. But as a strategy, school-by-school is not going to resolve the problems for all teachers.

spotA day in the life of a teacher and mother

In this job, organisation is everything. Without meticulous attention to detail and a lot of forward planning, you can pretty much guarantee you’ll be at meltdown stage before the term is out.

International socialist news and analysis

spotNew wave of protests in Tunisia

‘Arab Spring’ five years on: Five years after the fall of the dictator Ben Ali, the demands of the revolution remain unsatisfied. And in recent days Tunisia has been swept by a new ‘intifada’ (uprising) from its impoverished youth, fed up with a life of misery and mass unemployment.

spotIndia: student death exposes caste oppression

The suicide of a Dalit PhD student Rohith Vemula has refocussed world attention on the discriminatory caste system in India, in which 180 million Dalits are the most oppressed.

What we think

spotTories ‘Prevent’ civil liberties

The editorial of the Socialist: Increasingly the government’s ‘Prevent’ strategy is facing protest. It is just one example of the Tory’s government’s accelerating racism and attacks on civil liberties.

Council cuts and the fight in Labour

spotLabour councillor suspended for fighting cuts

Haringey Labour councillor Gideon Bull has been suspended from the Labour group for opposing cuts to the adult care service.

spotDave Nellist’s byelection appeal to Jeremy Corbyn: ‘let’s discuss how to fight the cuts’

Ex-Coventry MP Dave Nellist, chair of the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) and a former backbench colleague of Jeremy Corbyn, has appealed to the Labour leader to meet up and seriously discuss how to resist the new round of cuts being made by local councils.

spotLabour election post-mortem: nothing to report!

The Labour Party has released its long awaited report into why they lost the general election. Authored by former Blairite cabinet minister Margaret Beckett, it runs to 35 pages and demonstrates a refusal to draw the necessary conclusions from Labour’s defeat last May.

spotThe dark arts of Labour’s right

Having been decisively routed in the last year’s Labour leadership contest the party’s Blairite MPs and Lords, such as Peter Mandelson, continue to wage a guerrilla war against Jeremy Corbyn.

spotCouncillors must fight to defend our services

Labour’s shadow chancellor John McDonnell addressed a North Cambridgeshire Momentum meeting. Socialist Party member Joe raised the issue of Labour councillors refusing to make further Tory cuts by means of using councils’ reserve funds while preparing a national campaign of opposition.

spot‘People’s budgets’ and local democracy

Socialist Party members argued for East London Momentum to support no-cuts ‘people’s budget’ proposals, as well as establishing mechanisms for democratic reselection of MPs. This latter point was taken up without disagreement.

spotLewisham: no backsliding in council cuts fight!

At the January meeting of Lewisham Momentum, south London, Socialist Party members were delighted to see speakers from junior doctors and nurses. Unfortunately, local Momentum leaders showed confusion on the big political issues facing working class people.

Workplace news and analysis

spot“I have left work many times in tears” – a council worker

I work in an office for my local council supporting social workers. I have left work many times in tears from feeling very overwhelmed. At times my depression has been greatly heightened due to being in the workplace.

spotTrade union bill will stretch resources and limit action

The government finally released its impact assessment for the trade union bill on 21 January. It estimates the bill will cost unions £37 million over the next six years.

spotBirmingham teachers strike to resist academy attack

Teaching staff in the NUT at Small Heath School in Birmingham have started nine days of strike action against the threat to turn it into an academy.

spot24-hour tube strike suspended

The 24-hour tube strike set to start on 26 January has been called off after tube workers’ union the RMT agreed to suspend it. The campaign so far has forced London Underground to delay their plans on night tube, showing bosses cannot just steamroller through whatever they want.

spotCare services under threat in Haringey

The privatised adult care service in Haringey, north London, replaced the public service when the council cut it. Now the private service also faces closure.

spotWorkplace news in brief

Short reports on some of the latest trade union struggles. Victimised RMT rep defended; anti-cuts protest in Brighton; NSSN to hold Port Talbot steel solidarity meeting.

Readers’ comment

spotThe end for deep coal mining jobs in Britain

Kellingley Colliery closure marks the end of deep coal mining jobs in Britain and is a casualty of capitalism.

spotObituary: Dean Meehan 1962-2016

Socialist Party members were shocked to learn of the death of RMT member and TUSC candidate Dean Meehan at the age of 53.

spotLetters

Do you have something to say? Birmingham’s bungling cuts council; useless Ukip’s difficult year; job rejection letter rejection letter.

Socialist Party reports and campaigns

spotProtesting against closure of Huddersfield A&E

Anger is palpable wherever you go in Huddersfield. Ordinary people are organising events everywhere against the closure of the town’s A&E. An online petition has already topped 100,000.

spotCoventry children’s services closure protest

There will be a protest outside Edgwick Play Centre in Coventry against its closure, at 12pm on 30 January.

spotNew Socialist Party branch fights against St Austell austerity

Our new Socialist Party branch in St Austell, Cornwall, has wasted no time contacting our town councillors to seek their view on ‘no cuts’ people’s budgets and to offer our support to those opposed to passing on Tory cuts.

spotSocialist Party discusses the fight for socialism

Three regions of the Socialist Party have held regional conference so far this year: Southern, West Midlands and London.

spotSocialist Students bake-off

School and college Socialist Party members in Walthamstow, east London, raised more than £70 selling muffins, cookies and brownies to fund their delegation to this year’s Socialist Students conference in Coventry.

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