Internment, parading and the politics of class


The eruption of conflict and intense rioting in Belfast over the last couple of months is a clear illustration that, no matter what lengths Stormont and the media circus go to to disguise the ugly reality of the ‘peace process’, the scars of the past and frequent eruption of sectarian conflict refuse to go away as political parties play the sectarian card to get one over on their rivals. 

With over 300 police officers apparently injured so far this year, the honeymoon period following a 'successful' G8 conference has long passed - lifting the veil from a colonial sectarian settlement that has delivered a few crumbs to our class while the rich get richer. While at the same time our rulers in Stormont are busy stuffing themselves with £250,000 subsidised food expenses in 2012.

Anarchism, the left and fighting austerity in Greece - audio interview


Conversation with Dimitris,  a Greek anarchist living in Melbourne, co-founder of Anarkismo and translator of many English anarchist publications. I began by asking Dimitri, who became active in anarchism after a background in the Greek Communist Party, the nature of austerity in Greece and resistance to it. We also discussed briefly the history of Greek anarchism, its strengths and weaknesses in contrast with anarchism in Australia.

Government legislation an attempt to bully trade unionists into voting for paycuts


The ‘Financial Emergency Measures in the Public Interest Bill 2013’, published by the government on Thursday last (23rd May) is a clear attempt to bully public sector workers into voting for the re-hashed terms of the Croke Park II deal emphatically rejected by them just a couple of weeks ago.

Oppose the G8 dealers of austerity


The media charm offensive has began as our local corrupt political class roll out the the red carpet to the notorious gang of eight, dealers of austerity, state terror and imperialism.  The beautiful tranquil lakes of Fermanagh will be turned into a ring of steel’ with security fencing extending for miles protected by an army of professional thugs and watchtowers to keep the rest of us plebs at bay.

650,000 Homes STILL Not Paying Unjust Tax


In spite of a long and consistent campaign which has been waged against people in relation to the imposition of this unjust and unfair tax on homes, over 650,000 households have not registered with revenue [22.05.2013].  Draconian legislation and the threats of fines has not resulted in people volunteering their information to the revenue.

Industrial Action: Strong Yes Vote needed from teacher unions


Members of the 3 teacher unions – INTO, TUI and ASTI – have begun a ballot for industrial action which, if agreed, “will be triggered in the event of government proceeding unilaterally to impose salary cuts or to worsen working conditions.”     INTO members will vote at meetings to be held across the country this coming week while ASTI and TUI members are voting by postal ballot with a closing date of 20th May.

Time for a New Economics - Lost in a Maze of Economic Gibberish


Ever wondered why the lexicon of global finance seems so complicated?  Why so much of what passes for economic debate seems impenetrable?  Do your eyes glaze over as commentators wander into discursive mazes comprised of derivatives, subprime lenders, credit default swaps, and toxic assets?  Does talk of liquidity, quantitative easing, or collaterised debt obligations send you reaching for the remote control or the off-switch?  Is it possible we are just too economically illiterate to understand anything about the world of global finance?

Official: High Priests of Austerity Can't Add Up - the wrong maths that made us suffer


Unless you're a economics geek you've probably never heard of Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff. But that doesn't mean their work isn't affecting your life. A paper by these two prestigious Harvard economists has been a key justification for post-2008 austerity policies, with its oft-repeated claim that a national debt level of over 90% of GDP is fatal to growth. Yesterday we found out that paper was based on a spreadsheet that doesn't add up. Epic maths fail.

Austerity and the PIIGS - anarchists from around Europe - DABF 2013


The austerity policies of the latest phase of capitalism have wreaked havoc on the lives and living standards of working class people across Europe and beyond.  The struggles in which communities find themselves as they attempt to resist these policies have a lot to learn from each other.  As we strive for a better world and to build communities free from poverty, exploitation and hopelessness we need to find time and space to listen to each other, to find common cause and to support each other’s struggles.

Croke Park proposal shows why we have to take our unions back & organise to win


It is quite incredible that the majority of the union leadership had the nerve to stay in the Croke Park talks and return to us, the members, asking us to vote for such a terrible deal.  All of the unions should have had a ballot before entering into negotiations and we should have voted to refuse to enter discussions at all as long as a billion euro of cuts was a precondition of talks.  Once we entered on that basis, nothing good could come out of talks.  And after making the mistake of entering on that condition, all the unions should have had a change of heart and walked out once the reality of what would have to be accepted became clear.

We have to ask ourselves how we have found ourselves in unions where the leadership was allowed take such an approach.  And we have to work out how we create unions that we control and which will help us organise together to defend our common interests.

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