Peter Boyle

The massive public turnout in the US for the inaugural presidential address of Barack Obama underlines the incontestable fact that millions of people in the US and around the world invest great hope for change in him. But amid the bloody ruins of Gaza, the latest victims of US-backed imperialist war blinked uncomprehendingly at TV images of this spectacle of euphoria.
The traditional holiday season was cut short for the activists who produce and distribute Green Left Weekly - the Israeli government’s latest genocidal war on the Palestinian people in Gaza made certain of that.
As the US, Japan and Europe slide into recession, the leaders of many smaller countries are desperately hoping that continued strong growth in the Chinese economy, which has contributed about 15% of world economic growth in recent years, might save them from this meltdown.
There are some new faces joining the banks on the corporate bailout queue: General Motors, Ford and Chrysler.
There can be no doubt that the great majority of the 55 million US citizens whose votes made Barack Obama president want change.
Despite the spectacular vaporisation of trillions of dollars of financial assets, and the collapse of more than a score of banks around the world, we haven’t seen a single banker jump out of a window in Wall Street or its equivalents around the world.
Some parties in Malaysia’s ruling National Front (BN) government are trying to intimidate opposition parties and social activists, Socialist Party Malaysia (PSM) secretary general S.Arutchelvan told Green Left Weekly, a few days after the PSM’s sole federal MP, Dr D. Jeyakumar, had his car torched by thugs on October 17.
You must have noticed that the Christmas decorations are rapidly spreading all over the shopping malls, not so subtly signalling another season of extreme shopping and extreme credit card abuse.
I’ve lost count of how much bailout money governments have thrown at the global financial crisis. We all remember the US$700 billion that the US Congress recently approved, but in the months before that the US Reserve had already dished out nearly the same amount in bailouts, buyouts and guarantees for bad loans.
“This strategy is designed to help pensioners, carers and families, and first home buyers”, declared Australia’s Labor Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in his October 14 address to the nation. Rudd was announcing a $10.4 billion “economic security strategy” in response to the global financial crisis.

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