Tom Murray

Review of Paul Mason, 2013, Why It’s STILL Kicking Off Everywhere

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A question. If depression is the inability to construct a future, does depression not appear very like the world’s prevailing mood or zeitgeist right now?  As I write, the immense working majority faces into continued hierarchy, exploitation and polarisation, characterised by, among other things, ecological catastrophe, austerity without end, technocratic governance, nuclear annihilation, escalation of war... Compounding these dilemmas is our collective inability, real or illusory (I am not sure which), to construct an alternative future.

Today, it is easier to imagine the end of the world than the end of capitalism.  And yet. Something else is stirring. 2011 occasioned a shared, transnational impulse of ‘outrage’, ‘indignation’ and ‘enough’ against the cruelties of global financial institutions and the petty thuggery of enthralled states. The occupation of the world’s squares was simultaneously an impulse of ‘hope’, ‘solidarity’ and ‘the commons’, directed towards a dimly perceived yet somehow more just, more humane future. Tracking their emergence, evolution, fading, and re-emergence around the world – now in Cairo, then in Syntagma, here in Zuccotti Park, there in Puerta del Sol - Paul Mason, BBC journalist and author, has provided an insightful record and (somewhat more questionable) analysis of these revolts.

Hundreds attend CAHWT National Forum

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From across the country, over three hundred members of the Campaign against Household and Water Taxes attended an open discussion in the Red Cow, Tallaght about the future of the campaign as it faces into a new phase of opposition in 2013. The numbers attending far exceeded the organisers’ expectations and delayed the start of the meeting for half an hour.

Over 15,000 March against Austerity in Dublin

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On Saturday, more than 15,000 people marched through Dublin to demand an end to austerity and to oppose the State’s transferring of the financial crisis on to the shoulders of the working class.  Organised by the Dublin Council of Trade Unions and the Campaign against the Household and Water Taxes, the march offered people an opportunity to pressure the government prior to the budget and to raise the profile of the CAHWT, already the most popular act of civil disobedience since the foundation of the state.

Corporate Power and the Davos Class

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The recent World Economic Forum (WEF), the one where Enda Kenny reminded us of how ‘we’ went mad borrowing, is, in fact, an appropriate reminder of global corporate power and the costs it imposes on the global working class. In a recent libcom article, Steven Colatrella has suggested that the remarkable consistency of approach to crisis resolution adopted by governments the world over, notably their pursuit of austerity at any social cost, indicates the increasing commonality of ruling class interests, a convergence owing in part to shared experiences at institutions such as the IMF, WTO, G20 and EU. The WEF meeting at the Swiss ski resort of Davos must be understood in this context of the ongoing elaboration of global governance networks.

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