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Public discussion during Newcastle’s council election campaign has shifted to the left.
Addressing an assembly of petroleum workers in Zulia on September 5, Venezuelan labour minister Roberto Hernandez explained that the “only way to guarantee the advance of the revolution is with the unity of the working class”.
On September 1, Bolivia’s National Electoral Court (CNE) ruled that it would not allow the proposed December 7 referendum on a new constitution to go ahead.
“The news that nine Australian special forces soldiers have been wounded in Afghanistan — the largest number of casualties since the Vietnam War — reminds us that, as in any occupation, there will be resistance”, Alex Bainbridge, a spokesperson for Sydney Stop the War Coalition (STWC), told Green Left Weekly on September 4.
“Construction unions across Australia are running the Rights On Site campaign against the union-bashing ABCC [Australian Building and Construction Commission].
Protests are continuing against the Victorian state government’s planned desalination plant at Wonthaggi.
Ambre Energy’s proposed coal-to-oil project at Felton, a farming community 30 kilometres from Toowoomba, would be a disaster for the local community and environment, according to the newly formed Friends of Felton group.
The federal government’s climate adviser, Professor Ross Garnaut, told the National Press Club on September 5 that while climate change is “diabolical”, “intractable” and “daunting”, Australia is a “special case” and cannot be expected to cut greenhouse gas emissions to the same extent as other “wealthy nations”.
On September 2, Thai Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej declared a state of emergency in response to the political crisis brought about by ongoing demonstrations and government buildings organised by the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD), which has called on Sundaravej to resign.
The prescription of oral contraceptives to a 14-year-old without her parents’ knowledge has triggered a debate over adolescents’ access to confidential health care. The student of Bellarine Secondary College in Victoria was taken by a school nurse to a doctor, who prescribed the medication.

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