Miscellaneous

That's capitalism WS59

Date:

Chinese construction worker Chen Xianggui was recently convicted of "gathering people to disturb the social order'', a charge based on his union activism while working in Kuwait. Chen went to Kuwait in 1996 as one of thousands of Chinese overseas labourers and joined a union of foreign workers. As a union activist he helped organise a one-week strike in Kuwait in 1997 over unpaid overtime. The strike was legal under Kuwaiti law. But Chinese authorities revoked Chen's passport in early 1998, forcing him to return to China. He was arrested and held in detention until October 28th last year, when a court in Jintang County in his native Sichuan province convicted him.1

International news shorts WS58

Date:

"FU AEEU LEADERSHIP" said Dagenam and Enfield members in September. Following Amalgamated Electrical & Engineering Union leader Ken Jackson's 'partnership' fantasy comments about a "strike free Britain" at the Trade Union Congress, workers showed him what they thought of his 'roll over and play dead' attitude by walking out as part of pay negotiations at the AEEU represented Ford car works.

Source: Anarchist Trade Union Network, Britain


ANTI-UNION REPRESSION IN KAZAKHSTAN

Crisis in Indonesia - end of Suharto

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WHEN ANARCHISTS TALK about change, they inevitably come around to the subject of revolution. Anarchists argue that the present social system is incapable of real reform - that a complete overhaul is needed if we're to change the fundamental wrongs in this society. But, as most people know, revolution is not an everyday occurrence. Revolution is about a large number of people coming together at the one time. The aims of a revolution are often radical and far reaching.In contrast to a period of reform, the agenda for social change expands rapidly during a revolution. Suddenly unobtainable aims come within the grasp of ordinary people. Revolutions are great opportunities to re-organise society. As such they're not to be squandered.

Local Elections - bring on the dancing horses

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ANARCHISTS ARE NOT against democracy. We are in favour of the idea but we sure as hell disagree with the way it's currently practised. Fine cases in point were the local elections. These were the first local elections in the 26 counties for eight years. Indeed the government decided it might just as well be the wisest thing for all concerned to offer the sitting incumbents up to £20,000 to feck off and retire rather than having to put us all though the process of reminding us how great they were. Thankfully many of them did.

That's capitalism WS58

Date:

The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees is spending about 11 cents a day per refugee in Africa. Some refugee camps hold as many as 500,000 people and have just one doctor for every 100,000. Up to 6,000 people there die each day from cholera and other public health diseases.1

*****

In the ten years from 1987 to 1997 (the first decade of 'social partnership') the share of 26 county earnings going to wages, pensions and social welfare declined by 10%; from 69% to 59%. The share going to profits, rents and dividends rose by 10%; from 31% to 41%.2

Organise! dissolve and fighting partnership - For starters WS 58

Date:

Irish syndicalism - WE HAVE LEARNED with regret that the Irish section of the International Workers Association, Organise!, has decided to dissolve itself. Although we had political differences with this anarcho-syndicalist group - in particular with their approach of trying to build new revolutionary unions - we welcomed their existence as offering another option to those interested in anarchism in Ireland.

Corruption Tribunals Investigations - It's all so inevitable

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The Sunday Tribune of 7th March 1999 reproduced a photograph taken in the grounds of Dublin Castle in June 1990. Beaming at the camera, without an apparent care in the world, are the then 12 Prime ministers of the European Union, along with their foreign ministers. They had indeed plenty of reason to feel satisfaction with their weekend's work in Dublin - their idea of closer European political union was being discussed and we were all about to be embarked on the road to European Monetary Union and the wonders of the Euro.

Review: Hidden Agendas by John Pilger - The news that isn't on TV

Date:

"Only the truth is revolutionary". Whoever first coined this phrase displayed a deep insight into the true nature of politics and political ideas. What passes for political debate in the mainstream media seldom moves beyond the soundbite and the clever turn of phrase. Only a handful of journalists or commentators ever appear to delve beneath the surface and to question what we are all expected to take for granted - Noam Chomsky, Robert Fisk, John Pilger...

Anarchism and Democracy - To vote or not to vote?

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Election time is almost upon us again. In the South local elections will take place in June. At the same time, both North and South, elections to the European Parliament will be held. Once again anarchists will be discouraging the electorate from taking part. Kevin Doyle looks at the questions involved.

That's capitalism from WS57

Date:

West Lothian Council in Scotland has given a grant of £350.00 to enable the loyalist Broxburn Flute Band to travel to Ireland for the 12th. This band paraded through Portadown during last year's Drumcree stand-off on the very night that the three young Quinn children were burnt to death by a loyalist gang in Ballymoney.1*****

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