1051

Australia's age pension system is under attack from the federal government and right-wing, neoliberal forces. The whole community, current and future retirees, needs to mobilise to defend and extend the age pension system and change the superannuation system to more adequately meet the needs of working people. The age pension in Australia dates back to 1909. It was established as a non-contributory scheme, largely as a result of the demands of unions and community pressure.
Historically, the strength of unionism in Australia rested on the three tenets of what came to be called “labourism” — white Australia, tariff protection and compulsory arbitration. As these policy settings were wound back, union membership fell into gradual and then steep decline. From the late-1980s, the union movement's chief response was to reduce the number of unions. This was advanced on the logic that a small number of large unions would have access to greater resources to direct towards retention and recruitment of members.
In a period of so-called “budget emergency” when deep funding cuts are being imposed on universities and scientific research, the federal government has managed to find $4 million for a “consensus centre” headed by advocate for climate inaction Bjørn Lomborg. The $13 million centre will form part of the University of Western Australia’s (UWA) business school, with the Commonwealth contributing $4 million over four years.
We have been assaulted by a massive celebration of 100 years since the landing at Gallipoli on April 25. This is partly due to the success of the protests at the 200th anniversary celebration of the January 26, 1788 First Fleet landing at Sydney Cove. There have been many protests on January 26 since then, undercutting and besmirching Australian nationalism.
Stop the Intervention Collective (STICS) held a forum last month to update participants on the NT Intervention. Dr Shelley Bielefeld, lecturer in law at UWS, visiting scholar at Jumbunna Indigenous House of Learning at UTS and the Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research at ANU, spoke at the forum. Afterwards she spoke to Green Left Weekly. * * * How does the government justify the Intervention?
From Darwin to Hobart, Sydney to Perth and all points in between, thousands of people marched in rallies across Australia on May 1 to stop the Western Australian government closing 150 remote Aboriginal communities. Rallies were also held overseas in the US, Germany, New Zealand, China, Canada and Britain. This is the second international day of action. Previous rallies were held around Australia on April 10.
Activists, students and academic staff met at the University of Sydney on April 29 to discuss the university’s recent attacks on those involved in a protest against a lecture given by an Israeli colonel on March 11.
ADELAIDE Come to Voices of Dissent on Thursday May 14 at 7pm. A Fundraiser for Green Left Weekly. Featuring The Tangled Bank; Kyle Landman, The Young Offenders; Steve O’Malley; Where Was I?; Brendan de Paor. Entry $7. The Jade Monkey, 160 Flinders St, Adelaide. Ph Claudia 0435 108 439. BRISBANE
In California, the local chapter of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union has vowed to shut down ports on May 1 in a historic protest against police brutality, Democracy Now! reported. In a statement, the union said: "It is fitting that on May Day, International Workers Day, Bay Area ports will be shut down to protest the racist police killing of mainly black and brown people."
Democracy Now! on the anger that has exploded in Baltimore. The trsnscript is below. ***
A 7.9-magnitude earthquake claimed over 4100 lives and left close to 7000 injured in Nepal. Dozens of powerful aftershocks have rocked the country since Saturday. The quake is the worse in 80 years. Below we provide constant updates from a variety of sources. Prime Minister Sushil Koirala told Reuters the death toll could reach 10,000, as information of damage from far-flung villages and towns has yet to come in.
Hone Harawira, leader of the MANA Movement of Aotearoa (New Zealand), has called on all those who support justice to join in the Day of Action to Stop the Forced Closure of Aboriginal Communities on May 1, both in Australia and in New Zealand. He has released this statement. * * *
Last year, self-described "pick-up artist" and committed misogynist Julien Blanc arrived in Australia for a planned series of seminars on how to harass women. In response, a grassroots feminist network organised protests that forced several venues to cancel Blanc's seminars and, eventually, prompted the Australian government to cancel Blanc's visa.
It's Fatal Miss Hood Payback Records Out now www.facebook.com/misshoodoffical Hard-hitting rapper Miss Hood comes from a long line of women warriors. Her ancestors, the Kunai and Gunditjmara people of eastern and western Victoria, put female fighters on the frontline. "Both of the tribes were matriarchal, so women were equal to men," says the Melbourne-based emcee. "It wasn't unusual to have women warriors as well as men warriors." Little wonder, then, that her music packs such a powerful feminist punch.

Pages

Subscribe to 1051