Australia

Aboriginal leaders from Arnhem Land met with Prime Minister Kevin Rudd on July 23 and called for the restoration of the Racial Discrimination Act. The act was suspended in June 2007 to allow for the passing of the bi-partisan Northern Territory (NT) intervention legislation.
The NSW combined rail unions negotiating and campaign committees met on July 23 to discuss RailCorp’s latest offer for a new enterprise agreement.
An enthusiastic audience of 60 attended a public meeting on July 23 to hear the environmental, social and economic case for opposing the Queensland government’s decision to construct a dam on the Mary River.
A team of three experienced activists will contest the September 13 local government elections in Blacktown for the Socialist Alliance.
PM Kevin Rudd’s “education revolution”, a sad misuse of the word “revolution”, continues to starve public schools of funds. Meanwhile, wealthy private schools are given so much federal money they don’t know what to with it other than bank it or build Olympic-sized gymnasiums.
Rail workers’ militancy against Morris Iemma’s NSW Labor government has won some important concessions and forced the government onto the back foot.
“Unions are totally enmeshed in Cuban society”, Scott Wilson, an organiser for the Queensland branch of the Electrical Trades Union told a July 9 public forum, sponsored by the ETU and the Australia-Venezuela Solidarity Network (AVSN).
CANBERRA — The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela celebrated its national independence day on July 5 under the theme “For true independence and sovereignty”.
Socialist Alliance candidates in the upcoming local government elections are calling for a state-wide referendum on power privatisation to be conducted alongside council elections.
Arctic sea ice reached a record minimum in the Northern summer of 2007, prompting the revision of scientists’ predictions of how quickly it will melt away altogether in response to global warming — perhaps as early as 2010-13, rather than the hundred years later estimated in the latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports.

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