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On February 27, the federal government received a report on the review of the pensions system conducted by Jeff Harmer, the head of the families and community services department.
A March 2 open letter to minister for climate change Penny Wong has described the federal government’s climate policy as “completely out of step with both current climate science and targets in other developed countries”. The open letter was endorsed by 65 climate action groups (CAGs).
Across university campuses, students are organising in support of Palestine. A big focus will be Palestine Solidarity Week, an international week of action beginning on March 30.
Keynesianism and neoliberalism Graham Matthews' interview with Professor Bill Mitchell (GLW #785) presents a standard Keynesian view of the economic crisis. Essentially, it claims that the crisis is due to the bad policies of neoliberalism:
On February 20, more than 200 workers were fired without pay from the Lavington-based Drivetrain automotive parts factory in Albury, New South Wales, as the company entered receivership.
More than 4000 signatures on a petition in support of Gaza were handed over to ALP federal MP Julia Irwin outside her Cecil Hills office on March 7. They were collected over the last two months. Irwin has pledged to table the petition in parliament.
On February 18, 10 Australian economists criticised the Rudd government’s proposed carbon emissions trading scheme, and called for a science-based policy to achieve 25%-40% cuts in emissions by 2020. The statement is reprinted below.
The article below, by Jamal Juma, is abridged from <http://www.electronicintifada.net>. Juma is the coordinator of the Palestinian Grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign (visit http://www.stopthewall.org). A leader of the South African Palestine Solidarity Committee mentioned in this article, Salim Vally, will be a guest speaker at the World at a Crossroads conference, Sydney Girls High, April 10-12. For more information, or to register, visit http://www.worldatacrossroads.org.
Maintenance workers at the Foster’s Abbotsford plant voted on March 3 to accept redundancy packages from the company.
Under conditions of deepening recession, millions of working people went to the polls in the US on November 4 with the intention of voting for a change to the pro-corporate and pro-war policies of the Bush administration.
While the US and European economies are in recession, the World Bank and International Monetary Fund inspired “export” oriented policies being followed by the government of India are about to create social and environmental catastrophe in the name of “special economic zones” (SEZs — geographical areas in which less regulations on labour rights, environmental practices and other areas are applied on companies).

John Bellamy Foster is editor of Monthly Review and professor of sociology at the University of Oregon. He is the coauthor with Fred Magdoff of The Great Financial Crisis: Causes and Consequences, recently published by Monthly Review Press. This is a heavily abridged version of an interview was conducted by Mike Whitney that first appeared at Dissident Voice.