February 1995

Lies, damned lies and statistics: SPUC try to change the past

Date:

The 1993 abortion Referenda was a Victory for Women

Trusting the politicians

Date:

THERE IS ABSOLUTELY no doubt that voices will be heard telling anti-charges campaigners to trust one gang or another of politicians to abolish the charges if only we will wait until the next local elections and put them into control of the councils. It has been tried before. Our reply is "don't be conned again!".

No room at the refuge: Health Board subsidises B&B owners

Date:

An Eastern Health Board report published in December 1994, shows a huge increase in the number of homeless people put up in Bed and Breakfast accommodation by the Health Board.
Five years ago, the homeless unit run by the Board in Dublin's Charles Street spent £25,000 on Bed and Breakfast accommodation. Last year they spent just under £300,000. Homeless people who cannot get into the hostels because they are full, are put up in Bed and Breakfasts by the health board.

Water tax Disconnection Threats Defeated in South Dublin

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Campaign must fight on for complete abolition of service charges.

With the re-introduction of service charges in the three new Dublin Councils a year ago, the anti-service charge campaign spread to Dublin. Throughout the summer public meetings at which people pledged their opposition to these charges were held in a large number of areas, culminating in a conference in late September attended by approximately 130 people representing local campaigns and residents' associations.

Labour Pains for the UDA and UVF? A New Loyalist Party?

Date:

DAVID ERVINE of the UVF linked Progressive Unionist Party has been saying it. So has founder member of the modern UVF, Gusty Spence. Gary McMichael of the UDA's Ulster Democratic Party hints at the need for it. What they are all talking about is a new working class loyalist political party.

Loyalism and the Protestant Working Class: Time to Stop Beating the Orange Drum

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THERE IS NOTHING in Irish politics about which more rubbish is spoken than the Protestant working class. Now that the loyalists have ceased their murder campaign more attention is being paid to them. Not only are a lot of mainstream politicians unsure what to make of loyalism, when they are not downright scared of it; but many on the 'left' are equally bamboozled. Taking a serious look at reality shows up an upsetting fact: sectarian bigotry is still strongly ingrained. That is why the Orange Order, Apprentice Boys, OUP, DUP, UVF, UDA and all the other loyalist organisations can, between them, claim the allegiance of the vast majority of northern Protestants.

Child Molesters and Churchmen

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When the case of Father Brendan Smyth, the paedophile priest, came out, the whole country was revolted. But while the politicians attempted to score political points off each other, many important questions were not asked. Here was an unrepentant child molester, carrying out sexual assaults on hundreds of children over a period of forty years, with the full knowledge of the Catholic Church. What sort of twisted religious "morals" could justify the Church protecting such a man, for so long? Anarchists have always opposed clerical control of education.

Into the 21st Century - Anarchism on the Internet

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In the last year the international computer network called the internet has become a source for countless articles in the mainstream media. But did you know that anarchists have been using this system for several years now?

Behind all the mumbo-jumbo the net is no more than a cheap method of international communication. It allows collective discussion and the finding and retrieving of information. There are several different ways that anarchists have been using it.

About the International Workers' Association (IWA)

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Anarcho-syndicalism has been and continues to be the most influential current within anarchism. Anarcho-syndicalists seek to build revolutionary unions, that organise all workers in a democratic union with a minimum number of full time 'officials' who will be on the average wage of those they represent and completely answerable to the rest of the membership.

This is Not SIPTU - Syndicalist Swedish SAC

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CHRISTMAS saw many emigrants return for the holidays. One was Ciaran Casey who went to Sweden twenty years ago and is currently International Secretary of his union, the Central Organisation of Swedish Workers (SAC). This union describes itself as syndicalist and libertarian socialist. Workers Solidarity spoke to Ciaran and learnt

Thinking About Anarchism: The Need for an Anarchist Organisation

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Once you get past the caricatures of anarchists as bomb-throwers in black cloaks, you'll probably find that you have a great deal of sympathy with anarchist ideas. Reading through the articles in this paper, you may agree with our perspective on issues, and you could become one of the many people who are happy to be described as anarchists. Having got that far, and acting as anarchists in their everyday & political lives, why is it that so many don't see the need to go further, and join anarchist organisations?

Anti-Traveller Thuggery on the Increase

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Over the past year, there has been a series of physical attacks on Travellers in different parts of the country. Travellers were attacked in Glenamaddy in New Ross, Wicklow and Bantry.

In Bantry, a group of hired vigilantes wearing balaclavas broke into the caravan of an elderly Traveller couple. They hit the woman in the face with a pick axe handle, breaking her nose and giving her dozens of stitches.

Nigerian Awareness League: Raids on Anarchist Meetings

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The Awareness League in Nigeria is to become the first African section of the IWA. Readers of Workers Solidarity will remember the League from the reports of the jailing of four of its members by the state for opposing the military coup there. The international appeal launched on this occasion raised nearly $2000 dollars, saw pickets and demonstrations in many countries including Ireland and resulted in the publication of over 54 articles in languages including Japanese and Hindi. The four comrades were released.

Moldavian Anarchists Allowed to Leave after Intense Repression

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Over the last few years Workers Solidarity has responded to appeals launched on behalf of two Moldavian [1] anarcho-syndicalists, Igor and Tamara. They had come under severe state repression, first from the Stalinist regime and then from the 'new' nationalist one. This included frequent raids by the secret police, physical assaults, threats and the killing of the family dog. Political activity in such circumstances was impossible and there was a real danger that either or both of them would be killed.

Asian Unions Check out Anarchism

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Discussions have begun between anarchists and two Asian trade unions, the National Garment Workers Federation in Bangladesh which organises 5% of the 1 million textile workers of Bangladesh and the GEFONT trade union federation of Nepal. The NGWF calls itself an "independent revolutionary union organisation". GEFONT was a (pro-China) Communist Party oriented federation but following the collapse of the USSR and solidarity from anarchists during the recent battery strike is now developing contacts with anarchists.

1994 UN Human Development Report: War or Healthcare, Extravagance and Poverty

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The 1994 Human Development Report issued by the United Nations reveals that:

Daniel Guerin's 'Anarchism' in Russian and Arabic

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Daniel Guerin's book "Anarchism" has been translated in Russian and Arabic for the first time. Thanks to a collection at our 10th birthday party we are able to send £100 pounds to aid in the publication of this important work in these languages. The Arabic version will be distributed among immigrants in Europe, in the Lebanon and in other Arabic speaking countries. It's available in English from the WSM bookservice for £7.95.

Originally published in Workers Solidarity 44, 1995

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