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Monthly Archives: February 2009

AT the centre of the current media drive to find out, identify, and persecute the individuals, whether bankers and/or politicians who are held to be responsible for the world crisis of capitalism, is the burning bourgeois desire to deny that there is a crisis of the capitalist system itself,...
Over fifty power industry construction workers demonstrating outside the Isle of Grain power station in Kent yesterday morning demanded national action to defend jobs and trade union wages and conditions. Unite member Jimmy Collins said: ‘I do think it’s all wrong. I’m out of work. They are putting a local...
THE Trades Union Congress (TUC) warned of a ‘national emergency’ yesterday as the latest unemployment figures were published, showing that UK unemployment rose to 1.97 million by the end of 2008. The TUC’s general secretary, Brendan Barber, said: ‘This is another set of dreadful figures, and we fear worse is...
Egyptian President Husni Mubarak said on Monday that a longer term truce between Israel and the Palestinian group Hamas which controls the Gaza Strip could come into effect as early as next week. The deal – a cease-fire agreement between Israel and Hamas is expected to be signed within the...
Rising unemployment is a national emergency declared the TUC yesterday after the government revealed that 150,000 workers had lost their jobs in the last quarter of the year bringing the total of workless to 1.97 million. TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said that he feared that ‘worse is still to...
WORKERS at the General Motors Truck and Van plant in Luton were yesterday voting on a management offer that cuts their hours and pay. The offer, which has already been agreed by the leadership of the Amicus and Transport and General Workers sections of Unite, reduces the working week from...
ED BALLS, the Schools Minister, and the former economics advisor to the Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, over the weekend dropped his political master right in it, when he told the Yorkshire Labour Party conference that the current global capitalist crisis was ‘the most serious for over one hundred years’. For...
Firefighters are gearing up for a major fight against life threatening cuts to the service across the country. The FBU (Fire Brigades Union), in several regions have warned of the dangers. In South Yorkshire a FBU statement said: ‘The Fire Brigades Union has warned South Yorkshire managers not to risk...
VICE-PRESIDENT BIDEN took the stage at the 45th Munich Security Conference on Saturday to spell out that the US understood that it now needed willing allies and could no longer act like a bull in a china shop, as Bush-Blair had done. He spelt out that such were the dangers...
A delegation of members of the Council Housing group of MPs at Westminster met with Housing Minister Margaret Beckett last Wednesday, February 4th, to ask the government to act quickly on its new undertaking to build new council houses. The delegation also asked the government to provide the finance for...
London Mayor Boris Johnson was yesterday accused of ‘gross hypocrisy’ by rail union TSSA after tube staff were told they will not be paid if they failed to turn up for work last Monday when the capital was snowbound. They must claim last Monday as unpaid leave or a day...
The Royal Bank of Scotland, which received a £20bn bail-out with taxpayers’ money, is to proceed with a £1bn payout in annual bonuses. This is despite Chancellor Darling saying he ‘understands people feel angry about excesses of bank bonuses and that directors have a duty to behave responsibly’. RBS said it...
THE Royal Bank of Scotland was rescued with billions of taxpayers’ money after it made the biggest losses in the history of British banking, when the credit bubble, which it helped create, burst. Now, the bosses of this state-maintained bank have simply pocketed the billions, and reined back on providing...
SIPTU General President Jack O’Connor has slammed Taoiseach Brian Cowen’s ‘woolly speech’ to the Dublin Chamber of Commerce AGM on Thursday night, in which Cowen said that Irish people will have to accept a 10% to 12% fall in their living standards over the coming years. Addressing the business leaders,...
THE CWU leaders Dave Ward and Billy Hayes yesterday warned that the Brown government and the Royal Mail top management are planning to sack 16,000 workers, as part of their drive to part-privatise the industry. They want to hand over the sections that are making £900,000 a day...
THE British Tamil Forum has condemned the statement by the Co-Chairs (US, EU, Japan and Norway) of the international community demanding that the Tamil Tigers negotiate their surrender to the Rajapakse regime as giving Rajapakse a ‘Licence to Kill’. It said: ‘The statement demonstrates that the...

Greek Banks Downgraded!

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Three of the top Greek banks have been downgraded by the economic agency Moody’s, after losing 70 per cent of their share price in the Athens Stock Exchange during 2008. The banks’ relegation was announced on Wednesday, as it became clear that the attempt by the Greek government to privatise...
‘BRITAIN, Britain – stop the war!’, ‘British media – break the silence!’, ‘Don’t hide – genocide!’, were some of the slogans shouted by more than 10,000 Tamils and their supporters, who filled Parliament Square on Wednesday evening. It was the second London demonstration this week to demand an immediate halt...
THE jobs crisis in the UK is sharpening to boiling point in the motor car industry and in the power construction industry, affecting hundreds of thousands of workers. In the power industry the Unite union leaders have refused to lead the battle for jobs, leaving the rank and file...

Ford Strike Threat!

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THE Unite trade union has threatened Ford with strike action over 850 proposed sackings and the suspension of a negotiated pay deal to provide the redundancy money. Unite joint general secretary Tony Woodley said: ‘These proposals are completely unacceptable and a betrayal of Ford’s loyal UK workforce. ‘Ford are asking the...
LEADERS of the Unite and GMB trade unions are recommending a new jobs offer to a mass meeting at the Lindsey Oil Refinery, Lincolnshire, today. The workers rejected an offer of 60 jobs yesterday morning. Construction workers at the site have been on unofficial strike for more than a week...
Striking power workers in Lincolnshire are this morning voting on a deal agreed by union leaders yesterday after marathon talks facilitated by ACAS. Union leaders met with the Total owners of the Lindsey Oil Refinery at Killingholme in a bid to end the unofficial action that broke out last...
Greek armed riot police repeatedly attacked with tear-gas and stun bombs 1,500 protesting farmers from Crete in the port of Piraeus on Tuesday morning. Farmers had attempted to cross the police blockade and reach their tractors parked next to the ferries that had brought them to Piraeus...
IRAN launched its first satellite into space powered by its own rocket system, Safir-2, on Monday night. The research and telecommunication satellite was put into orbit as part of the celebrations to mark the 30th anniversary of the Iranian Revolution of 1979. Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinezhad’s spokesman said: ‘On the...
TamilNet reports the International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC), in a statement issued from Colombo on Sunday, expressed shock at the shelling of Puthukkudiyiruppu Hospital a second time in a week. It said ‘wounded and sick people, medical personnel and medical facilities are all protected by international humanitarian...
‘I call on every trade unionist around this country in the construction industry to come out on official action,’ Unite official Keith Gibson told a mass meeting of 1,000 unofficial strikers outside the Lindsey oil refinery in Killingholme, Lincolnshire yesterday. Yesterday saw the fifth day of unofficial strikes in defence...
‘Today, Congress took a first and important step to rebuilding the American Dream,’ said SEIU International Secretary-Treasurer Anna Burger on Thursday as Senators from both parties worked together to reauthorise the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). ‘Leaders of both parties worked hard to craft this bipartisan bill. ‘It delivers peace...
CHINESE Stalinist leader President Hu Jintao has sent Prime Minister Wen Jiabao and Vice President Xi Jinping on international visits in a vain attempt to save collapsing capitalism and head off a working-class political revolution at home. Wen met British Prime Minister Gordon Brown at Downing Street yesterday after they...
The North West London Hospitals NHS Trust yesterday confirmed that it is looking to cut £32 million (ten per cent) from its budget over the next 12 months and cannot rule out significant job cuts. The Trust employs 4,200 staff and has a budget of £330 million. Campaigners calculate that up...
THE wave of ‘wildcat strikes’ that are taking place in power stations and oil terminals throughout the UK have the full support of the News Line. The strike wave is against employers using EU law to award contracts to foreign companies to bring in non-union contract cheap labour, instead of...

Academies Crisis!

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Angry teachers have condemned the declaration by Schools Secretary Ed Balls that he will resist calls to slow the pace of the Academy programme. This is despite a call from NUT acting general secretary, Christine Blower, to scrap academies in the wake the disgraceful conditions at the Richard Rose Central...
A huge mass of Tamil people gathered on the north side of the Thames at Pimlico on Saturday lunchtime calling for an immediate ceasefire in Sri Lanka, and a halt to the genocidal attacks of the Sri Lankan army on Tamil civilians. Over 125,000 demonstrators slowly made their way alongside...